Celcom Axiata looks to single digit 2019 revenue growth

Celcom Axiata Bhd chief executive officer Idham Nawawi — Picture courtesy of SoyaCincau
Celcom Axiata Bhd chief executive officer Idham Nawawi — Picture courtesy of SoyaCincau

PETALING JAYA, March 8 — Celcom Axiata Bhd expects to achieve single-digit growth in total revenue in 2019 despite a flattish 2018 for the telecommunications industry.

Chief executive officer Idham Nawawi said although the company may not experience growth as in the past decade, it would continue to focus on customer experience, including preparing itself for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR 4.0) and the upcoming Fifth Generation (5G) era.

“We are also looking at new avenues to improve revenue growth, including the use of our fixed wireless access (FWA) device.

“We see it as a potentially new area and opportunity through our ‘Guna Celcom’ campaign, tapping specifically into the area which is still using copper broadband Internet,” he told a media briefing on the campaign here, today.

Last year, total revenue grew 1.1 per cent to RM6.66 billion from RM6.59 billion in 2017 while service revenue increased 1.0 per cent to RM6.12 billion from RM6.05 billion, previously.

On capital expenditure (capex), he said the company had allocated about RM1 billion for this year, lesser than the RM1.05 billion set aside in 2018, RM1.28 billion (2017) and RM1.33 billion (2016), mainly because it was catching up on the 4G implementation.

“In previous years, the higher capex was a turbo charge investment to build capacity. Now, we can leverage on the capabilities and capacities that we have invested. But on average, our capex is still higher than most industry players,” said Idham.

He said Celcom’s 4G long term evolution (LTE) coverage expansion covered over 90 per cent of the population and as at February this year, it’s network investment had led to the deployment of over 9,000 LTE sites nationwide, delivering more data on a larger network capacity.

Meanwhile, on 5G, he said the company conducted its first trial in South East Asia back in 2017 on a 28Ghz band, achieving up to 18Gbps and latency as low as five milisecond.

Idham added that Celcom would showcase its 5G use-cases such as holoportation, connected vehicles, virtual reality football matching, 5G fixed wireless access and connected drones at its 5G industry showcase to be held in April. — Bernama

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