The CEO behind Monaco Telecom SAM, the company that is in the process of acquiring Vodafone Malta for €250m, said that there are no plans for the company to bring in its own people once the acquisition process is complete.
Martin Peronnet was responding to questions by the press in a media briefing on Monday.
Monaco Telecom is the incumbent telecoms operator in the Principality of Monaco, offering a comprehensive range of fixed, TV and mobile services. While it has a monopoly on fixed broadband services, Mr Peronnet stressed that Monaco Telecom is under fierce competition for mobile services.
The shareholders of Monaco Telecom are the Principality of Monaco and NJJ Telecoms, which also has interests in telecoms operators in Cyprus, Ireland, and Switzerland.
In Cyprus, Monaco Telecom acquired a telecom company called MTN, where the company recorded revenues of €278m in the year to 31 December 2018. It rebranded MTN to Epic, and is currently the second largest telecommunications provider in Cyrpus.
The acquisition of Vodafone Malta by Monaco Telecom is subject to regulatory approval by the Malta Communications Authority (MCA). On this, Mr Peronnet said that the company expects to conclude with the MCA before the end of Q1 2020.
Asked about whether he foresees any issues with the regulator, Mr Peronnet said that there should not be any major issues.
Concern has been raised by Vodafone Malta consumers regarding the ability of Monaco Telecom to provide comparable service, more so international, when considering the international weight behind the Vodafone brand.
Asked about these concerns, Mr Peronnet said that Monaco Telecom has been negotiating deals with international operators for some time, and is focused on expanding its services. He added that therefore, consumers should expect no disruptions from their current services.
When asked about any plans to increase pricing, since it does not have the same economies of scale cost benefits as the Vodafone group brand, Mr Peronnet said that the aim is to be competitive in the Maltese market, therefore an increase in price of services rendered would not serve this aim.
He went on to note that Monaco Telecom is the only telecommunications operator in the world currently serving a nation-wide market with 5G coverage.
He argued that the company is a great fit for Malta as it has invaluable experience in providing high-end, innovative technology and infrastructure to smaller markets.
As a company, he said the strategy was to invest in similar markets in terms of size within the Mediterranean, which is why it invested in Cyprus and has not set its sights for Malta.
“We believe that our operational model is efficient. We can help companies to develop and we understand what it means to be a leading operator in a small market,” he said.
He stressed that two elements makes, they believe, Monaco Telecom as being a perfect fit for Malta. The first is the focus on technology adopted by the company, pushing them to be a “showroom for telecommunications”.
Secondly, he said that the company’s long experience in the international market, having been present since 1997 and invested in emerging markets such as Kosovo, Afghanistan and Africa, means that the company has special operational knowledge.