Finance and Cost Optimization
Yangon, Myanmar — June 3rd, 2016
Mr. Elie El Haddad is the Chief Financial Officer of IGT, who has 15 years of experience in the finance sector at various functional positions. Recently, Mr. Elie had interviewed with my Myanmar Insider, Charlie Greene.
C : Please explain to our reader about IGT and its current position in the market.
E : IGT is a tower company signed by a BOT agreement with telecom operators in Myanmar since early 2014. Currently we are the biggest tower company in Myanmar with over 2000 sites on air with additional 2000 under construction. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the telecom operators for their trust in IGT and we are looking forward to grow our business partnership together through ensuring the best services are provided to customers and/or users counting on the support, dedication and commitment of our in house team and outsourced vendors and business partners to make it happen.
C : Please explain how you obtained financial from FMO and IFC?
E : Due to lack of trust in the business and banking sector in Myanmar our shareholders were obliged to inject a big amount of equity then managed a short term loan from Qinvest. After a year of ongoing discussions we managed to convert our loan from short to long term facility up to $167m from 6 DFI’s led by FMO (Dutch Development Bank), currently we are having ongoing discussions IFC and ADB for additional equity and loan funding up to $500m.
C : What are the long term objectives of IGT in Myanmar?
E : To grow the telecom industry and the infrastructure in Myanmar at all levels Tower, Fiber.
C : What are your future expansion plans for Myanmar?
E : Grow the business while sustaining our leading position through building and the most reliable and profitable tower business in Myanmar.
C : What is your target market segment?
E : Our focus would be to improve and develop the Myanmar infrastructure at all levels especially that now we are supported by DFI’s funding which would allow us to do so.
C : What are your current CSR activities?
E : CSR activities is an obligation as part of our license, on top of that us and our shareholders are really keen to fully support by providing the needed funding to communities, orphanage, hospitals, village donation, etc.
C : How are you increasing the local content and employment in IGT?
E : We started with 40% expats and 60% locals post localization initiative we managed to drop the ratio to 20%/80%. In total we have 250 direct local employees, 3000 landlords and offered more than 10,000 business opportunities for locals through our vendors. We started a local empowerment plan and we are keen to develop our team and have nominated all the candidates and currently we are in the process of providing them with the necessary developments and the proper mentoring needed to promote and sustain them.
C : How are you enjoying your life here in Myanmar ?
E : Work load when constructing and operating towers is big; at the same time we have to ensure funds availability at all time so honestly I have not had time to enjoy life yet. I should improve my work life balance which is always a main challenge.