Telecom companies Tigo and Une announced a merger on Tuesday, and Avantel reported that it is investing $250 million to join the 4G club.
The CEO of Tigo, Esteban Iriarte, declared that he expects his company to continue to grow with the merger with Une. Tigo has grown 18% over the last three years.
With the fusion, the new company will be able to offer customers combined communication services and entertainment content such as TV, music, and movies in a fixed mobile network.
Avantel has ambitions to reach 1 million users
Avantel president Jorge Palacio announced that the company is investing $250 million into the 4G network in 22 Colombian cities, with the goal of quadrupling its current customer base of 203,000 users to 1 million, reported El Tiempo.
Avantel plans to first focus on the business sector by delivering high-speed quality Internet coverage to cooperations.
“We are the only mobile operator dedicated 100 percent to the small, medium, large, independent professionals and government entities. Our commitment is to continue providing solutions that generate a positive impact on productivity and social welfare of Colombians,” said Palacio, according to reports by RNC radio.
Minister of Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) Diego Molano estimated that 2 million Colombians to join the 4G network in 2014, according to Colombia’s Semana magazine.
The amount of users of both 3G and 4G reached users reached 3.8 million in 2013, which is an increase of 61% or 1,4 million new users compared to 2012.
According to El Espectador, Colombia is second in South America for number of telecom companies offering 4G network.
Bad pratices, contract reform
Tigo and Movistar were both investigated early this year after mobile phone operator Avantel claimed the companies were failing to share their 4G LTE services with rival operators.
Tigo and Movistar were accused of failing to meet state obligations in the terms of their 4G tender to allow new entrants such as Avantel and Directv access to their infrastructure so that the market competitors might benefit from equal conditions and offer the same advanced roaming services to their customers.
In May, ICT Minister Molano was investigated over apparently failing to guarantee competitive equality in offering 10 year contracts, effectively permitting a monopoly of the country’s telecommunications, and possibly resulting in net losses for the Colombian government.
- Tigo-UNE y Avantel sacuden mercado de telecomunicaciones (El Tiempo)
- Avantel se estrena como operador de servicios móviles 4G en Colombia (RNC Radio)
- Colombia, segundo en 4G en Latinoamérica (El Espectador)
- ¿Cuántas conexiones 4G tendrá Colombia este año? (Semana)