Published on August 15th, 2009 | by Arsalan Mir19
What Went Wrong With Wateen
Wateen Telecom is a sister concern of Warid Telecom and a fully owned venture of Abu Dhabi Group. Wateen, with the collaboration of Motorola, deployed nation-wide WiMAX network in Pakistan and pioneered its deployment globally (actually this was the very first post on this blog in 2006). I remember attending the ITCN in August 2007 when it was launched with a zeal of making Broadband a reality and promising exceptional quality over WiMAX. Now, after two years, it is rather sad that Wateen has laid off around 550 employees.
What went wrong with Wateen that it had to let go of around 50% of its employees?
Few of my friends had an opportunity to do internship at the RAN Department of Wateen. When they joined on day 1, they were handed a some vendor manuals to study. At the end of the day I called them up to ask how did their day go? They told me that Wateen has more people than work. I said that you can’t decide this in just one day.
Now with this 50% slash in number of employees the picture is clear, they did have more employees than needed. This could be because they hired more manpower during the initial network roll-out. Now what they have on their lists is some upgradation and O&M of the current network. The O&M is outsourced to the vendor and upgrades generally requires less manpower . So the ‘more manpower’ was just not needed.
I leave here for the reader to decide. Did this happen because of the global recession or mismanagement by Wateen’s senior management?