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Our Strategy

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Overview

With an international footprint that extends to 16 countries across Asia, the Middle East and Africa, Etisalat Group operates in a wide array of macro-economic and geo-political contexts. Added to this is the fact that the telecom industry itself is under-going unprecedented transformation, driven by various factors, including evolving technologies such as 5G, new business models, changing customer behaviours, and the increasing traction of over-the-top (OTT) competitors. These factors are slowly eating into the traditional core telecom services revenues that retain a sizable portion of the Group’s countries of operations. Underpinning the transformation of the telecom industry and in fact all industries is end-to-end digitisation, which influences telecom operators both internally, in terms of operating models, and externally, in terms of business models and value propositions. This digital revolution is enabling consumers to adopt increasingly tech-savvy lifestyles, businesses to change the way they operate and deliver value, and governments to offer ever-smarter solutions on the route towards truly smart governments and cities.

This all-encompassing digital transformation provides the telecom industry with significant growth opportunities. This is because the demand for high-speed and low-latency data, smartphones, digital solutions, and appealing content across multiple digital channels is continuously increasing. In addition, due to the integration of cross-industry value chains in verticals such as media, finance, healthcare, education and automotive sectors, digitisation is enabling telecom operators to play roles that are more significant in these adjacent industries.

Target strategy

The Etisalat Group introduced the “TARGET” strategy to align the strategic direction of all operating companies, thereby taking full advantage of growth opportunities going forward.
The vision and the associated strategy were introduced in response to the macro-economic and market environment across our footprint, which continues to evolve thus resulting in the “TARGET” strategy being even more relevant.

“TARGET” sets out the Group’s priorities, focus areas, direction and ambition within the following framework:

  • To drive the digital future to empower societies
  • Accelerate value generation through innovation and digitisation
  • Raise capabilities and develop talent across the Group
  • Grow B2B/digital across the footprint
  • Expand portfolio in MENA and knowledge economies
  • Transform operating companies into strongholds

To drive the digital future to empower societies

In 2018, Etisalat Group introduced a powerful and digitally inspired vision: “Drive the Digital Future to Empower Societies”.

This vision is guiding Etisalat Group in its transition from a traditional telecom operator to an integrated ICT/Digital solution provider, which in turn is enabling Etisalat Group to cement its industry-leading position by working towards the following goals:

  • Reshaping the lives of consumers
  • Accelerating the economic growth of businesses
  • Enhancing the competitiveness of the countries in which the Group operate

Accelerate value generation through innovation and digitisation

As the rate of industry disruption picks up speed, the Etisalat Group will accelerate and enrich the development of its portfolio of open innovation initiatives essential for competition in the digital world. As part of this, the Etisalat Group will adopt a range of open innovation tools – such as scouting in major global innovation hubs, working more extensively with ecosystem partners, including start-ups, and remaining open to different investment vehicles – to fast-track the Group’s achievement of its ambitious vision. Revenue growth, digital capability development, customer experience improvement, and efficiency optimisation will serve as anchors for this strategy. Etisalat Group is expanding its product portfolio into related verticals beyond the core to create new engines of growth and increase revenue diversification. Nonetheless, a fundamental principle of the Group’s innovation strategy is to strengthen and build on the core business by leveraging established competences and assets.

Raise capabilities and develop talent across the Group

The realisation of the Etisalat Group’s vision and the execution of the associated strategy requires robust capability and competence development. As such, the Etisalat Group will focus on enriching and developing a digitally aligned culture, enhancing collaboration both within and between operating companies, implementing effective succession management, facilitating the development and retention of existing talent, and initiating vigorous and efficient measures for the acquisition of new talent to meet the growing needs of the digital world.

Grow B2B/Digital across the footprint

The Etisalat Group is taking full advantage of the aforementioned digital opportunities. This is evidenced by, among others, Etisalat UAE’s establishment of Etisalat Digital, a dedicated unit that drives digital transformation by enabling enterprises and governments to become smarter. The unit has become a major contributor to incremental revenue growth for Etisalat UAE operations. Going forward, Etisalat Digital will develop its unique competencies to extend across the Etisalat Group’s footprint to capitalise on the growing opportunities within the region, by leveraging organic as well as inorganic opportunities and continuing to employ best-fit operating models.

Expand portfolio in MENA and knowledge economies

The Etisalat Group’s strategy will remain open to inorganic growth opportunities through majority control of well-positioned operators within target geographies of Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Eastern Europe. Meanwhile, the Group will continue to explore opportunities to optimise its portfolio in order to balance growth and shareholder returns.

Transform operating companies into strongholds

The Etisalat Group continues to provide strategic and operational support for all operating companies to maintain and improve their market positions by defending their core businesses and enhancing digital capabilities. The focus is on driving excellence across sales and marketing, IT/network, procurement, and regulatory agenda management. In particular, the Group actively manages customer experiences to offer an optimal balance between digital and traditional channels for a true omni-channel experience. End-to-end digitisation will both complement and enable these focus areas, which will centre on key technologies, such as big data, artificial intelligence and robotics. As some of the operating companies have already achieved stronghold status and operate in more advanced digital markets, their transformative efforts have shifted towards more intense focus to become increasingly agile, digital and efficient.
Collectively, these efforts will yield a portfolio of stronghold operations that will maximise shareholder value.

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