Colman Deegan, the CEO of Vodafone Turkey, spoke to Sabah daily in an exclusive interview in which he underlined the vibrant Turkish market and the opportunities in the country and that the company plans to continue its investments in the Turkish market.
Vodafone is one of the biggest players in the Turkish communications industry which people have embraced even more recently due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
“The pandemic has reminded all how critical communication and its infrastructure are. We will continue to carry out infrastructure investments here, with over TL 24 billion ($3.23 billion) spent so far,” he said.
“If I try to summarize Turkey, where I’ve been working for years, with three words: opportunity, dynamism and hospitality. Turkey is a leading market within our group in terms of digitalization, which is our main strategy globally,” Deegan added.
“I’ve traveled to 40 provinces since I came here. Everywhere I went, I was impressed by people’s motivation and energy. People are willing to try new things, use new technology and improve their livelihoods. Thus, there is great potential. I am working with a dynamic team comprised of young and talented professionals,” he underlined.
“People clung onto life via technology during the pandemic. We have seen how critical it is. As Vodafone, we believe that we have a critical role to support nations all over the world. During these trying times, we gave importance to three topics: the well-being and safety of our employees, the continuation of our services and sustainability of our ecosystem,” Deegan stated.
“As a ‘technology communications’ company, we are going through a period of time when we reap the fruits we sow in digitalization and continue our activities without a halt. We regularly organize interactive meetings with employees all over the country. Over 3,000 employees share their ideas and emotions, which provides us a perfect experience,” the CEO added.
Deegan also said the pandemic increased internet usage greatly.
“We have seen an increase of 10% in mobile and 60% in broadband data usage. We have increased our capacity. Our field teams ensured the continuation of our operations. We continued to be at the service of the nation for the people to keep in touch with their families and friends, for students to continue their remote education and to support health services,” Deegan added.
He also detailed the company’s investments in Turkey.
“We have contributed investments totaling TL1.7 billion to the Turkish economy and digitalization in the 2019-2020 fiscal year. Ninety-nine percent of our investments are technology investments,” he added.
“We are serving 23.6 million mobile subscribers and 1.1 million broadband users. We provide both mobile and broadband technologies under the same roof,” Deegan stated.
Deegan also said that the communications giant is happy and plans to continue its investments in Turkey.
“Turkey is a leading market in our group and we are striving for its digitalization. We see Turkey as a market with high potential, and we are here as a long-term investor,” he said.
Fiber infrastructure critical
The CEO also stated that fiber internet infrastructure is a critical topic.
“We are committed to fiber in Turkey. There is a need for future proof infrastructure in both broadband and mobile. Within this scope, it is of great importance that operators currently owning fiber infrastructures share them,” he said, calling upon two biggest fiber operators, Türk Telekom and Superonline to open their infrastructure for use by other operators.
“We also believe that state incentives are important. The Turkish government has many times reiterated how much importance it lays on the communications infrastructure. We are on the same page with our government. We want to provide a quality 5G service in the upcoming period to everyone. We have to increase the number of our cell towers for that,” Deegan added.
“As Vodafone Turkey, we are ready to provide any assistance and to take part in any project to realize the infrastructure that will prepare Turkey for the future,” he concluded.
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