According to a GNA report citing a press release from the company, existing network coverage has been increased by 30% and would be increased to 100% before the end of 2009.
The release indicated that Vodafone Ghana has replaced most of the equipment at its old cell sites with sophisticated radio equipment in order to “optimize quality and enhance coverage.”
The statement added that the company had embarked on a vigorous cell site development programme that had brought its coverage to several communities which hitherto were not receiving its signals.
The company says it had made great improvement in its services, increased roaming traffic and added new voice and data destinations.
“We have grown our customer base by over 35% since launching in April.”
Emphasising on the advantages of using Vodafone in terms of cost, the statement said it costs less to call other networks from Vodafone than calling within networks, adding that it makes it unnecessary to switch “your Vodafone chip even when you are calling other networks”.
On job creation, it says, “we created over 7,000 direct and indirect jobs in sales and distribution throughout the country.”
“Currently, Vodafone Ghana has 1,000 more staff than all the other mobile telephone companies combined (MTN, TICO, ZAIN and KASAPA)”.
According to the statement the evolution of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone was expected to involve a process of transformation that would result in the re-structuring of the business in line with best practices.
The release said while Vodafone Ghana had about 17 percent of the market, the rest combined were covering 83 percent.
Putting up a defence for the company’s voluntary redundancy programme which has come under severe criticisms and opposition from staff, Vodafone Ghana said the restructuring exercise underway would streamline the business and provide it with the agility and strength to be able to compete for the benefit of its customers and shareholders.
Vodafone Plc acquired 70% of Ghana’s national telecom provider, Ghana Telecom in August 2008 on a debt-free, cash free basis. Ghana’s Parliament approved the sale despite the opposition’s stance against the transaction. Following the sale, the new government has established a commission to look into the transaction that led to the sale of the national telecom provider.
On Wednesday April 15, 2009, Ghana Telecommunications and its mobile telephony offshoot, Onetouch were officially branded Vodafone.
Vodafone Ghana recently trimmed down the 4,000 workforce of the company when 850 workers gave up their jobs through the voluntary programme. 950 more workers are expected to voluntarily give up their jobs, but they appear unprepared for it. Discussions are underway to resolve the issue.
By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi