Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large

Omantel takes crucial step in crowded sector

Increases stake in Oman's top provider of fibre optics

The telecommunications sector is becoming increasingly congested in Oman, forcing companies to scramble to keep market share. Oman Telecommunications (Omantel), the country's largest operator, has taken a step in that direction by increasing its stake in Oman's top fibre-optics provider. Omantel yesterday told the Muscat Securities Market it has received approval from the sultanate's Capital Markets Authority to increase its stake in Oman Fiber Optic and become its largest shareholder. Omantel already owns a 25 per cent stake in Oman Fiber and plans to buy another 15 per cent. Oman Fiber is the only designer and provider of fibre-optic networks in Oman.

"This is a strategic company and is the backbone of the Omantel's fixed-line infrastructure," said Chandresh Bhatt, a telecoms analyst at Global Investment House in Kuwait. "It makes sense to increase the stake in the company to strengthen its operational base and its position in the market. "Oman Fiber is also the main network provider and increased stake in the company will help Omantel valuations as well."

Since the entry of Nawras, the second telecoms operator in the sultanate, Omantel is facing increased competition, which will intensify further when Nawras launches its own fixed-line telephony services this year. Mr Bhatt said that despite difficult market conditions, Omantel had the highest dividend yield ratio among its regional peers and could generate plenty of cash. Omantel reported 2 per cent revenue growth in the first quarter of this year and its net profit rose 67.7 per cent from the fourth quarter of last year.

The operator also said damage to its infrastructure and property caused by Cyclone Phet, which hit Oman last month, would have no effect on the company's financial results. Omantel's shares have been rising of late after sharp declines last month. They are up 9.5 per cent since hitting a 52-week low of 1.060 rials on June 6. The shares yesterday closed marginally higher at 1.161 rials. skhan@thenational.ae

Back to the top

More articles


Editor's Picks

 The Greens, villas: Q1 no change. 3BR - Dh210-250,000. 4BR - Dh210-260,000. 5BR - Dh220-300,000. Q1 2013-Q1 2014 5% rise. Pawan Singh / The National

In pictures: Where Dubai rents have risen and fallen, Q1 2014

Find out how rental prices in the prime locations in Dubai have altered during the first three months of the year and the current rates you will pay according to data provided by Asteco.

 Above, the private pool of Ocean Heights' five-bedroom penthouse flat. Courtesy Christie’s International Real Estate

In pictures: Penthouse flat is height of Dubai luxury living

A five-bedroom penthouse in Ocean Heights in Dubai Marina is on sale for Dh25 million and comes with a private pool and an unparalleled view of Dubai.

 The cooling towers of the Temelin nuclear power plant near the Tyn nad Vltavou in Czech Republic. The country wants to continue expanding nuclear energy capacity despite cancelling a tender to build two new units. David W Cerny / Reuters

In pictures: Best business images for the week to April 17, 2014

Here are some of the best business images for the week to April 17, 2014.

 Three generations of the Hakimi family tend to their stall Crawford Market in Mumbai. Subhash Sharma for The National

In pictures: Shopper’s delight at Crawford Market in Mumbai

Crawford Market is an old British-style covered market dealing in just about every kind of fresh food and domestic animal imaginable. Later on renamed Mahatma Jotirao Phule, the market remains popular among locals and visitors by its old name, taken from Arthur Crawford who was the first municipal commissioner of the city.

 The Wind, Energy, Technology and Environment Exhibition takes place from April 14 to April 16. Above, the Dewa showroom during last year’s Wetex. Jaime Puebla / The National

April corporate and economic calendar for the UAE and overseas

From Cityscape to Wetex to stock-market holidays to nations reporting first-quarter GDP figures, here is our helpful calendar of April's business events in the UAE and internationally.

 Get the latest information on credit cards, bank accounts and loan products in the UAE. Mark Lennihan / AP Photo

Rates report: Latest on UAE loans, accounts and credit cards

Souqamal.com brings you the latest interest rates on banking products in the UAE.

Events

To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National