CAT sets goal of 1m fixed broadband users
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CAT sets goal of 1m fixed broadband users

Marketing focus to revive core business

CAT Telecom is ramping up its retail fixed broadband internet presence in a bid to increase its subscriber base by more than six times to 1 million users by 2019.

The strategic move is in line with the state telecom enterprise's policy to revive its fixed-line telephone and fixed broadband businesses, senior executive vice-president Viroj Tochareonvanith said.

CAT has 160,000 broadband subscribers.

"We're ramping up our marketing efforts with improved services to extend the range of our broadband service to residential customers, community malls and trading centres," Mr Viroj said.

CAT has outlined six areas of focus — telecommunications infrastructure, telecom towers, an international internet gateway and submarine cables, mobile phones, fixed-line and broadband internet and IT services.

The state telecom yesterday signed an exclusive agreement with SET-listed property developer J.S.P. Property Plc to provide telecom solutions at J.S.P.'s Sampeng II Plaza on Kallaprapruk Road.

It will spend 20 million baht to build fibre-optic infrastructure providing fixed-line phone, broadband internet and WiFi services at the 7-billion-baht trading venue.

CAT will share 5-10% of its telecom service revenue with J.S.P., Mr Viroj said.

Beginning next year, CAT expects major revenue generation from mobile phones, fixed-line phones, broadband internet and telecom infrastructure services.

For 2014, CAT forecasts a net profit of 200 million baht on consolidated revenue of 40 billion baht.

In other news, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Minister Pornchai Rujiprapa said Thailand must invest more than 10 billion baht to expand hard infrastructure for telecommunications in order to serve the first phase of the government's digital economy policy.

The ICT Ministry has a fiscal 2015 budget of 3.7 billion baht.

Mr Pornchai said his ministry was on the verge of outlining its strategic plan for a digitally driven economy, with the aim of doubling the country's internet penetration to 40 million users within the next three years.

Thailand's ranking on the ICT development index, measured by the International Telecommunication Union, has improved significantly, to 81st out of 166 countries worldwide last year compared with No.91 in 2012. Its ICT use also improved to No.71 last year from No.105 in 2012.

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