ANANDA, Myanmar’s first high-speed data-only provider, plans to intensify its rollout of its 4G+ network in major cities including Yangon and Mandalay, said Alan Sinfield, the firm’s new chief executive.
“We will continue to expand our network, building more and more sites every single month in the next three years,” he said in an interview.
Sinfield said the firm plans to build more than 2,500 macro sites and a very large number of small-scale sites in three years, covering the whole Yangon and other cities.
“In terms of the number that we are rolling out month by month, our target is quite significant. We want to make sure we build enough sites in Yangon and Mandalay so we can provide the best services to the people there. We are now actively working on that,” he said.
Over the past six months, the firm has been making plans to build its network in Mandalay, the second city where its service will be available. It also plans to open shops under its own brand in Mandalay, where traffic analysis is being done to ensure the high-speed data services that residents are looking for, he said.
“Like what we did in Yangon, we will do a launch event in Mandalay soon,” said Sinfield.
The firm launched its service in Yangon six weeks ago, and received a lot of positive feedback from customers, he said.
“We have exceeded our first month’s target. We have more people subscribing to our services than what we expected. Currently, the demand for our services is rising month by month, which is music to our ears. We are on target to continue that trend,” he said.
Having joined the firm in early June, Sinfield has plans to leverage his experience in nearly 50 markets including those in Asia and Africa. He also worked in Thailand, Cambodia, Hong Kong, South Korea and Vietnam for many years.
“As a nascent market, Myanmar has incredible potential and wonderful challenges. It is an exciting time to be in the telecom industry here at this moment in time and to be part of Ananda, which is committed to bringing an innovative new dimension of service to the market,” he said.
“I have a lot of experience in rolling out fibre and broadband networks, delivering high-speed data solutions to customers. I believe I can move Ananda forward. Over the coming months, you will start to see things happen,” Sinfield said.
He said the firm has huge plans in the short and medium terms, in addition to improving its capability and skills.
“We have a lot of expansion plans. There are major initiatives under way - to grow business, to improve products and services, and to expand our network. We will allow the people to expand their horizons,” he said.
“We have a specialist team of network planning and network optimisation. Every single day of the week, we are working on how we improve the sites, the speed and all other things.”
Sinfield rejected criticism of the company on such social networks such as Facebook over a “potential speed limit” if one downloads too much. He claimed Ananda customers download 10 times more data than those of any other network in Myanmar.
“Our speed is very fast in many areas. We might have some congestion in some networks with a lot of users, perhaps in the downtown areas during the daytime. That does not mean the rest of our network is bad,” he said.
“We do not set the speed. It depends on the number of users on a particular network. There may be different speeds in different locations but we will make sure we provide fantastic speed.”