Friday, November 4, 2011

PTCL History

History of PTCL
From the beginnings of Posts & Telegraph Department in 1947 and establishment of Pakistan Telephone & Telegraph Department in 1962, PTCL has been a major player in telecommunication in Pakistan. Despite having established a network of enormous size, PTCL workings and policies have attracted regular criticism from other smaller operators and the civil society of Pakistan.
Pakistan Telecommunication Corporation (PTC) took over operations and functions from Pakistan Telephone and Telegraph Department under Pakistan Telecommunication Corporation Act 1991. This coincided with the Government's competitive policy, encouraging private sector participation and resulting in award of licenses for cellular, card-operated pay-phones, paging and, lately, data communication services.
Pursuing a progressive policy, the Government in 1991, announced its plans to privatize PTCL, and in 1994 issued six million vouchers exchangeable into 600 million shares of the would-be PTCL in two separate placements. Each had a par value of Rs. 10 per share. These vouchers were converted into PTCL shares in mid-1996.
In 1995, Pakistan Telecommunication (Reorganization) Ordinance formed the basis for PTCL monopoly over basic telephony in the country. The provisions of the Ordinance were lent permanence in October 1996 through Pakistan Telecommunication (Reorganization) Act. The same year, Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited was formed and listed on all stock exchanges of Pakistan
PTCL launched its mobile and data services subsidiaries in 2001 by the name of Ufone and PakNet respectively. None of the brands made it to the top slots in the respective competitions. Lately, however, Ufone had increased its market share in the cellular sector. The PakNet brand has effectively dissolved over the period of time. Recent DSL services launched by PTCL reflects this by the introduction of a new brand name and operation of the service being directly supervised by PTCL.
As telecommunication monopolies head towards an imminent end, services and infrastructure providers are set to face even bigger challenges. The post-monopoly era came with Pakistan's Liberalization in Telecommunication in January 2003. On the Government level, a comprehensive liberalization policy for telecom sector is in the offering.
Last Year, in middle of 2005 Government of Pakistan had decided to sell at least 26 percent of this company to some private agency. There were three participants in the bet for privatization of PTCL. Etisalat, a Dubai based company was able to get the shares with a large margin in the bet.
Last year when Government was going to privatize the company there was country wide protest and strike by PTCL workers. They even disrupted Phone lines of some big Government institutions like Punjab University Lahore and many lines of public sector were also blocked. Military had to take over the management of all the Exchanges in the country. They arrested many workers and put them behind bars. The contention between Government and employees ended with a 30% increase in the salaries of workers.
There have been various changes in the company due to privatization. Such examples include the VSS (Voluntary Separation Scheme for its employees), ERP (SAP based), restructuring, B& CC (Billing and Customer Care Software) etc. Another seemingly minor change was change of brand identity (logo) that will present PTCL's new face after privatization, with greater focus on customer satisfaction and bringing about of new advancements in telecom for Pakistani consumers.