Zain Bahrain has reported a 22% surge in its customer base during 2016, from 795,000 to 971,000 customers at the end of the year. The growth was attributed to new products and services rolled out by the operator, to enable a digital lifestyle. Zain Bahrain also benefited from growing awareness of its 4G LTE network. The telecom company posted a net profit of BD4.3 million ($11.3 million) for the year, compared to a BD5.1 million net profit ($13.5 million) in the previous year, showing a decline of 18% .
Meanwhile, revenues amounted to BD64.6 million ($170.9 million) in 2016, a 9% change from BD71.1 million ($188.1 million) the previous year. The results were attributed by the operator to competition in the market.
Profit for the three months ending 31 December 2016 stood at BD1.2 million ($3.2 million), a 29% change from BD1.7 million ($4.5 million) YoY. Revenue for the quarter reached BD15.8 million ($41.8 million) in comparison to BD17.5 million ($46.3 million), a change of 9.7%.
"Zain Bahrain's profitability in such a highly competitive market landscape speaks volumes about the merit of its market strategy," said Zain Bahrain's chairman, H.E. Shaikh Ahmed bin Ali Al Khalifa. "And the fact that Zain Bahrain's customer base continues to grow in the face of this intense competition speaks of the quality of the user experience on our network.
"Despite the intense competition, Zain Bahrain has managed to position itself well for the long term, with a higher share of the market as consumers responded to our many marketing initiatives during the year. We remain committed to our core values of excellence and innovation, and look forward to crossing the one-million customer mark in in the near future, while creating increased value for our shareholders."
Zain Bahrain added 87 new sites to its 4G LTE network. A total of 44 new sites were also added to enhance the 3G and LTE mobile network coverage. An IMS based next generation core network was introduced to provide better call quality for fixed and enterprise customers.
2016 saw several developments by Zain Bahrain. It rolled out the 'Truly Unlimited Social Media' prepaid and postpaid packages under which customers were not billed for data used through social media applications beyond their initial subscriptions.
Zain Bahrain worked in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, as well as various educational institutions, to help jobseekers better compete in the market.
Zain Bahrain also participated in the second edition of the 'Kun Muntijan' event organised by Tamkeen. The Kingdom's micropreneurs were also invited to participate in the operator's in-house learning and development courses and in 'Khameesna Zain' ('Zain Thursdays'), a showcase for local start-ups held every week at its Seef headquarters.
Zain Bahrain launched the third edition of its annual national mobile phone and e-waste recycling campaign. The operator further rolled out mobile learning (m-Learning) and AR technologies to enable all employees to access learning materials on the go via their smartphones, laptops, or tablets.