May 27, 2024

Zain, Omantel unveils Zain Omantel International (ZOI)

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Talal Al Mamari, Omantel CEO
Talal Al Mamari, Omantel CEO

Zain, a leading telecommunications operator providing digital and ICT services in seven markets across the Middle East and Africa, and Omantel, Oman’s leading integrated telecommunications services provider and the preeminent regional wholesale provider, announce the launch of ‘Zain Omantel International’ (ZOI), an unprecedented joint venture that will establish itself as the Middle East’s premier international wholesale services provider. This ground-breaking partnership aims to revolutionize the wholesale telecommunications sector by offering a unique proposition that combines the strengths of both parties to deliver unparalleled service and support to customers worldwide.

Zain & omantel logo

ZOI signifies a substantial advancement in the telecommunications industry and is poised to become a global powerhouse due to Zain’s extensive regional presence and success in the retail and digital arenas, combined with Omantel’s exceptional wholesale capabilities and comprehensive international subsea and terrestrial networks. The joint venture will cater to the end-to-end telecommunications needs of operators in the Middle East, as well as international carriers, data centers, hyperscalers, content, and cloud providers seeking services within the region and beyond.

As a result, ZOI will manage all international wholesale requirements of Zain and Omantel operations in eight countries, serving over 55 million customers. Furthermore, ZOI will optimize the existing wholesale businesses of both companies by reducing operating costs and increasing competitiveness through access to state-of-the-art low-latency and high-capacity services over its extended footprint.

Bader Al-Kharafi, Zain Vice-Chairman and Group CEO
Bader Al-Kharafi, Zain Vice-Chairman and Group CEO

Bader Al-Kharafi, Zain Vice-Chairman and Group CEO commented, “This strategic value-enhancing partnership reflects the next stage of industry collaboration and advancement, and represents another significant milestone of our ‘4Sight’ profitable growth strategy. It also demonstrates our commitment to transforming the business and creating synergies while extending our reach and capabilities to provide the highest quality services to our customers. ZOI is ideally positioned to evolve into a significant international player on the wholesale telecommunications scene that will benefit both Zain and Omantel on financial, commercial and operational levels.”

Talal Al Mamari, Omantel CEO, added, “The joint venture with Zain is a testament to our unwavering commitment to transforming the international arm of Omantel group into a leading global provider, building on our existing position as a top regional wholesale player. ZOI is poised to become the primary gateway from our region to the rest of the world, leveraging the combined strengths of Omantel and Zain. With these differentiating factors, ZOI is the preferred partner with a truly unique presence in the international telecommunications landscape.”

ZOI, in collaboration with the Omantel and Zain Group operating companies, will ensure that Zain and Omantel customers continue to experience supreme quality in international services such as internet connectivity, voice, roaming, messaging and more. Some noteworthy projects that ZOI will undertake, along with its consortium partners include the development of Blue-Raman; Africa-1; Jeddah to Marseille (J2M) subsea systems and an extensive terrestrial network connecting most of the regional countries to the landing stations and data centers. Such high-profile projects, to name a few, will create an ecosystem that is unrivalled in the region.

Sohail Qadir has been appointed as the CEO of ZOI. With a proven track record of success, Mr. Qadir has spearheaded the development and expansion of Omantel’s international wholesale business. During his 13-year tenure as the Vice President of Wholesale at Omantel, he successfully positioned the company on the global map and increased revenues tenfold. Under Mr. Qadir’s leadership, Omantel Wholesale had a remarkable transformational journey that resulted in investments in more than 20 subsea cables, hosting of global hyperscalers, direct interconnections with all major international service providers and extensive roaming coverage all over the world.

Sohail Qadir, ZOI CEO said, “The region has matured in terms of the scope and consumption of reliable wholesale services, and this strategic partnership in this integral part of the telecommunications business is well-timed to capitalize on global trends. I look forward to leading ZOI in delivering differentiated services to regional and international customers alike, and providing increased value and enhanced customer-experience to all associated stakeholders across our extensive operational footprint.”

ZOI is set to be a game changer in the telecommunications wholesale industry, offering a wide portfolio of services and solutions to meet the increasing demands of wholesale customers. This strategic partnership between Zain and Omantel embodies the realization of wholesale synergy, aimed at consolidating each party’s international operations and growing the investment at the group-level.

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