Home Insider Expat Insider Interview with Vikram Sinha CEO of Ooredoo Myanmar

Interview with Vikram Sinha CEO of Ooredoo Myanmar

When was your first visit to Myanmar?

My first visit to the Golden Land was last April 2017.


What was your first impression of the country and how has your impression changed since your first arrival?

As soon as my family and I arrived at Yangon Airport, I was greeted by friendly people and welcomed very warmly. I was really struck by their sincerity and helpfulness. We visited Shwedagon Pagoda to pay homage and the peacefulness we got cannot be expressed. Myanmar is the country where there are a lot of potentials and opportunities for the people.

And how did you end up as Chief Executive Officer of Ooredoo Myanmar?

2014. Prior to joining Ooredoo Myanmar, I was the CEO at Ooredoo Maldives, where I led a team responsible for many successful projects, such as bringing 4G+ to nation and completing a landmark submarine cable project. Together these helped bring to life our vision of connecting all local communities to the socioeconomic opportunities opened up by high speed internet connectivity. After this appointment, I assumed the position of Chief Operating Officer (COO) in Ooredoo Myanmar, and also, a full member of Ooredoo Myanmar’s Executive Committee. I was confirmed as CEO of Ooredoo Myanmar after four months as Acting CEO.

What are your primary role and responsibilities?

My primary role is to support the development of Myanmar’s telecom industry and bring the latest technology and innovation to our customers. Because of our stable and reliable network with fast data speeds, people in Myanmar can access essential communication services which allow them to enjoy the internet more. My responsibilities and commitment extend beyond infrastructure development as I look forward to working alongside my team in 2018 to help people in Myanmar experience Ooredoo’s network to improve their daily lives.

W h a t k i n d o f c o m p e t i t i v e advantages does Ooredoo have over its competitors?

At Ooredoo Myanmar, we want to help enrich the lives of Myanmar people  with affordable, fast data services coupled with relevant and appealing content to help them enjoy the internet more. Through this, we hope to help transform Myanmar into a truly digitalfirst nation. Our competitive advantage lies in delivering a superior customer experience and to do that we provide a fast and stable network, wide coverage and relevant content, such as our iFlix partnership, with the best value for money.

We lead in both technology and innovation as we focus on constantly improving our customers’ satisfaction. One example is how all our Ooredoo SIMs are compatible with any SIM slot in any device. We also offer the strongest and widest 4G plus network in Myanmar, underpinned by a strong, committed team dedicated to customer excellence.

What are your plans for network coverage expansions in the near future?

Right now, 200 townships in Myanmar are under Ooredoo 4G Plus, which is two third of the townships in Myanmar. Ooredoo’s 4G network has the strongest and widest 4G coverage in Myanmar and we continue to invest in improving our network quality.

We will introduce the first 4G Pro network in Myanmar in early 2018. We are proud to be a leader in technology and an advanced telecom service provider bringing innovative products and a superior data experience for customers. We will continue to rollout our network expansion so that our customers can enjoy the internet through the best data experience with Ooredoo network.

How different working with s t a k e h o l d e r s i n M y a n m a r compared to other countries?

Each country has its own unique culture, regulations and policies. As an international company, we work collaboratively with the Union, local and regional governments employing international best practices to bring not just connectivity to people but also to support the social and economic development of communities. We always conduct our business according  to the local laws that govern the countries we operate in and Myanmar’s friendly business culture has meant that we continue to build good, longterm relationships with all of our stakeholders.

How many local employees are working at Ooredoo Myanmar?

We have over 900 local employees. At senior management level our Chief of Sales and Distribution Officer at Ooredoo Myanmar is a local Burmese woman with overall responsibility for Ooredoo’s national distribution channels, managing a network that spans more than 100,000 touchpoints across the country. She is responsible for both direct and indirect sales teams; helping customers gain easy access to Ooredoo’s expanding range of products, as well as timely customer services.

How do you segment your customers?

We segment our customers by their needs. When people talk about mobile data, they choose Ooredoo because of our network quality and continuous focus on network improvement to offer the best data experience. For heavy data users, we offer an attractive data pack known as “Hottest Data Packs” which allow users to roll over unused data to the next month. For those who enjoy base tariffs and do not prefer additional steps such as subscribing though USSD codes or My Ooredoo App, we have also simplified our offering. The cheapest call rate 10 Kyats/min and the cheapest data price 5 Kyats/MB. Through these offers, you can see clearly that we have segmented our customers based on their behavior and needs.

What are your competitive strategies?

Ooredoo Myanmar stands for the values of “Wi Ri Ya” – Energy and Effort, “Myit Tar”- Loving and Caring and “A Date Htan” – Determination and Decision. We have always provided telecom services demonstrating these values for the benefit and growth of Myanmar and the people in Myanmar.

We also work collaboratively with the local government employing international best practices to bring not just connectivity but the strongest, latest and most cost-effective network services throughout Myanmar, unlocking the rich potential of the internet and digital age for all citizens, especially those in rural areas. For example, apps developed by Ooredoo Myanmar such as Site Pyo (a free smartphone . app designed to improve Myanmar farmers’ lives by providing valuable information to improve harvest yields) or M-Pitesan, our mobile money service, are more easily accessed on a 4G network, bringing positive impact to both developed areas and underserved communities more quickly than ever before.

How has Ooredoo contributed back to society so far?

From the very first day we received our operating license we have sought to contribute to Myanmar’s society. In addition to investing in the development of telecom sector we are investing in a future for Myanmar’s people though CSR initiatives which aim to make a real and meaningful difference to people lives. Our three core values of connecting, caring, and challenging define Ooredoo and serve as a guide to how we work. We truly care for our customers; and we always want to make a difference. Our social initiatives focus on health, education, digital, economic and community development. We have partners with reputable local and international organizations such as Beyond Access Project, Myanmar Red Cross, PACT Myanmar and UNOPS. We are currently organizing “The more you talk, the more Ooredoo will donate” program in Magway, Ayeyarwaddy, Bago, Sagaing, Mandalay and Yanogn Regions and Mon and Kayin States. Ooredoo will donate 1 Kyats for every minute that an Ooredoo customer uses Ooredoo’s network to call any local numbers. We will continue to offer this CSR program nationwide.

How do you see the potential of Myanmar’s telecom sector?

As a result of Myanmar opening up its telecommunications market, customers’ demands are increasing rapidly. Our continued collaboration with the Myanmar government will help ensure the provision of quality services to customers who are asking for faster, stronger connections every day. These services include mobile communication, FTTX services and Internet of Things solutions. These services will create more job opportunities within the wider telecom industry. Continual development of the telecom sector will create a long-term win-win situation for service providers, users and the government.

If you could make a change to one major government policy in order to ease the way of doing business, what would it be?

A clear and firm policy and regulatory framework will help ensure sustainable competition in telecommunications delivering world class services to the people of Myanmar at competitive prices. We look forward to important policy issues being dealt with in 2018 such as the creation of an independent regulator. We will continue to work collaboratively with the Myanmar government to provide quality services to customers.

How are you enjoying your stay in Myanmar?

I’m enjoying my stay in Myanmar very much and look forward to contributing to the vibrant telecom industry which has evolved here. Ultimately, my goal is the same as Ooredoo Myanmar’s: to enrich the lives of Myanmar people with affordable, fast data services coupled with relevant and appealing content to help them enjoy the internet more. I am excited to be part of Myanmar’s transformation into a fully digital nation; Myanmar is still growing at a tremendous rate and as CEO of Ooredoo Myanmar I am excited to be a part of this story.[/paypal]