STC CEO: Telcos need to review business models

Digitisation has made evolution a necessity to sustain
Dr. Khaled Biyari, CEO of STC Group
Dr. Khaled Biyari, CEO of STC Group

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During his participation in MWC2016 sessions, the CEO of STC Group Dr. Khaled Biyari stressed the urgency to review the business models of telcos given that data usage by individuals has lately increased several-fold while voice services are contributing less to revenues of telecommunication companies.

Dr. Biyari made the call during his “Digital Strategies for New Mobile Phone Services” presentation, as part of the “Ministerial Programme” sessions held alongside the MWC between 22-25 February in Barcelona.

Recalling the phases of the industrial revolution, Biyari fast-forwarded to what has become known today as the “Digital Revolution,” a term recently adopted at the World Economic Forum in Davos, which dubbed it the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” in the history of humanity. With the increased penetration of “Digitization” in every aspect of daily life, it is imperative for all operators, worldwide, to review their business models to keep up with this increased demand and to sustain their business models.

According to Biyari, the four main factors he believes will drive future success comprise pricing policy, quality of products and services, technology and all that entails in terms of scalable network structures and last but not the least, regulatory bodies and their role in enacting regulations that encourage investment in the sector.

He concluded by comparing two regulatory models. The first model adopted by the U.S. focused on encouraging investment in infrastructure, which led to a boom in the telecommunications industry and a rise in service levels; the second model focused solely on increasing competition and lowering prices, which led to a deceleration in growth and low quality of telecommunication services. He stressed the necessity to build a regulatory framework that fosters investment, caters to the demands of the new digital economy which, to a large extent, depends on the ability of telecommunication companies to build the necessary infrastructure and offer high quality services at fair prices.

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