Neotel promises to create a one-stop communications shop

Zweli Mokgata

Zweli Mokgata

Converged communications network operator Neotel expects to roll out a full package of communication services to consumers this month.

The group announced at a media briefing yesterday that it had reached a target of R1billion revenue in 2007. Half of this came from the recent acquisition of Transtel. The remaining R500million came from Neotel's core operations.

Since launching its service offering to businesses last year, the company has bagged 130 enterprise customers and an additional 120 that came with Transtel. It currently has 327 employees and the 500 from Transtel.

Neotel chief executive Ajay Pandey said: "We've experienced very fast growth in the past year and we'd like to keep that trend going."

He said he had expected revenue to double to R2billion by the end of the year, but profits would not come through for another two years.

"It's not a secret that it takes three years for a telecommunication company to become profitable. We are still spending on our infrastructure development," he said.

The company intends to spend R11billion over 10 years on capital, including a countrywide wireless and fibre-optic network.

Neotel's "fibre to the curb" project will be live by June, offering services to enterprise clients in the key areas of Pretoria, Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg.

Home users in selected areas will be able to purchase converged services, including home phones, Internet and data services via wireless networks from this month.

Customers currently source communication services from multiple service providers but Neotel promises to create a one-stop shop that will wreak havoc with Telkom's dwindling hold on the telecommunications market.