Telenor CEO Sigve Brekke charts main priorities

Telenor India
Telenor CEO Sigve Brekke has charted the telecom network operator’s main priorities in the coming quarters.

Though Telenor did not confirm that the Norwegian telecom will exit from India burning its fingers, Sigve Brekke — during the company’s earnings call last week – said that sale or merger is one of the main options for the company since it will not buy fresh spectrum during the auction in September 2016.

Telenor priorities

Focus on cost and efficiency is the top priority for Telenor. “We are scrutinizing all costs in all the business units. We have initiated several structural initiatives like digitalizing the core customer journeys, digitalizing distribution and digitizing the service part of the customer’s journeys,” said Sigve Brekke.

Profit of Telenor fell to NOK 1,111 million in Q2 2016 from NOK 3,456 million in Q2 2015. Telenor’s revenue marginally increased to NOK 32,477 million in Q2 2016 from NOK 31,406 million.

Telenor is continuing with several network initiatives to cooperate and select assets better in the different market and introduce more standardization.

Data will be yet another focus area in all markets – especially in Asia — for Telenor. Telenor is trying to migrate customers into the more high-value data packages.

“We are also focusing more and more on contextual marketing, trying to give more personalized offers for the customers also growing the data revenues,” said Sigve Brekke.

Telenor is undertaking several IT initiatives trying to simplify its IT legacy and with that more cloud-based standardized solutions which it hope can yield both at the cost efficiency but also a better speed in go to the market on new products.

Telenor will be careful with additional Capex investments in the months due to the uncertainty in telecom markets such as India.

Sigve Brekke on India

Telenor will not be participating during the spectrum auction in India in September 2016 due to high reserve price. The company will also be skipping spectrum auction in Thialand.

Sigve Brekke also shared concerns about the 4G launch of Reliance Jio, a telecom operator promoted by Mukesh Ambani.

“We don’t know how fast the 4G penetration is going to be penetrated in the mass market. We are still awaiting for Jio, the new entrant to launch and to understand how that will change the dynamic and in the meantime, we are just focused on taking our fair share,” said Sigve Brekke.

Telenor acting CFO Morten Karlsen Sorby shared concerns about impairment loss of NOK2.3 billion in the first quarter and the recoverable amount of the intangible assets to the tune of NOK4.4 billion on the account of Telenor India.