Viva launches mobile service in Kuwait
Kuwait, December 3, 2008
Kuwait Telecom Company (Viva) on Wednesday announced the launch of its GSM network services in Kuwait thus becoming the country’s third mobile network operator after Zain and Wataniya.
Viva is run by Saudi Telecom (STC), the largest Arab mobile company in terms of capitalisation and which holds a 26-per cent stake in the company. It was set up with a capital of KD50 million ($182 million).
An IPO to sell off 50 per cent of the new operator was originally scheduled for February 2008 but was delayed until July, when KD25 million ($94 million) was raised in a sale open to Kuwaiti nationals only.
Viva CEO Najeeb Alawadhi had told in September that the company aims to attract 300,000 subscribers in its first year of operation.
As part of its innovative plans, the mobile company had recently launched a 'booking campaign' to kick-start its commercial operations in the country.
Under the scheme, customers could reserve their 'vanity numbers' based on three categories; golden, silver and bronze.
"A special golden number will cost a subscriber KD100, but the money will be donated to charity. We will not benefit from it. For silver and bronze, if you book your desired number, it will be free of charge," said Al-Awadhi.
Prospective customers are encouraged to book numbers to match their landlines, current mobile numbers, birthdates, dates of precious occasion, or simply a set of easy-to-memorize numbers.
"All you need to do is contact Viva, book your selected number with your name and civil ID number and you'll get the number depending on its availability. Numbers are available on a first-come first-served basis. Viva however cannot guarantee the availability of any number, so book now; reservation is free," he added.
Zain and Wataniya together have about 2.5 million clients in a country of 3.4 million people.-TradeArabia News Service
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