New Delhi: Sunil Mittal's Bharti Airtel, Asia's leading Integrated Telecom services provider, today said it had crossed the 100 million customers mark, becoming the third largest single country mobile services operator in the world and sixth largest single country integrated telco in the world.
"The Indian Telecom sector, seen as providing the most affordable services in the world, has grown by leaps and bounds in the last decade," said Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman and group CEO, Bharti Enterprises.
Mittal said, "This milestone reiterates the emergence of India as one of the world's top telecom markets and we are delighted to be at the forefront of its growth. On this occasion, we would like to thank all our customers, partners and the Government of India for their constant support."
The company had crossed the 75-million customer mark in August 2008 and 50-million mark in October 2007, making it one of the fastest growing telcos in the world. The first 25 million was achieved in July 2006.
Bharti Airtel announced a series of network augmentation and customer service initiatives. On the network front, Airtel will roll out 100,000 BTS sites by this year end to set up wider and deeper network coverage across the country. This will improve network quality and resilience; build redundancies and business continuity, to ensure that Airtel customers continue to experience a world-class seamless network for voice and data services.
The company is planning to transform its entire fixed line network to IP/Broadband over a phased manner. This transformation will enable Bharti Airtel's transformation to Next Generation Networks, offering advanced services like High-speed internet, Triple Play, Media-rich VAS, MPLS, VPN for both Retail and Business customers.
On the customer service front, Airtel has started a set of initiatives to empower the customer and currently its Self Service Option over SMS already has over 100 million hits in a month. It is also leveraging cutting-edge technology to build a state of the art Service Management Centre which will dynamically monitor and manage services to ensure that customers are always kept informed proactively.
Around 60 per cent of Airtel's customer additions come from rural areas. For the rural customers, Airtel has already set up 14,000 Airtel Service Centres and going forward the company is looking at having over 100,000 such centres across the country by March, 2010.
Bharti Airtel Limited, a group company of Bharti Enterprises, is Asia's leading integrated telecom services provider with operations in India and Sri Lanka, with an aggregate of 100 million customers.
Bharti Airtel Limited has been voted as India's most innovative company, in a survey conducted by The Wall Street Journal.