Smart draws 43% more postpaid customers

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@paolomontecillo

02:54 AM November 21st, 2012

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By: Paolo G. Montecillo, November 21st, 2012 02:54 AM

MANILA, Philippines—Smart Communications made significant strides in the postpaid space from January to September as it focused on getting more loyal customers.

The Smart brand alone ended September with about 700,000 subscribers, up 43 percent over the same period last year. Combined with affiliate brand Sun Cellular, which has 1.5 million subscribers, the group now has 2.2 million postpaid users.

“We are the fastest-growing postpaid brand in the Philippines, outpacing the overall postpaid market’s 28 percent,” Smart Wireless Consumer Division head Emmanuel Lorenzana said.

The increase is driven mainly by the deluge of first-time postpaid subscribers particularly those who want to experience superior mobile services through the Smart Freedom Plan.

Launched in July 2012, the Smart Freedom Plan is the Philippines’ only postpaid plan with no lock-in and no fixed monthly service fee.

Subscribers pay only for the individual services or service buckets, such as UnliCall, UnliText and UnliSurf that they use.

In the third quarter, Smart Postpaid experienced its fastest rate this year in terms of revenue share with a 25-percent jump. The company also maintains the highest average revenue per user (ARPU) in the industry.

“We are the only telco in the Philippines with a four-figure ARPU,” Lorenzana claimed.

Smart’s chief rival Globe Telecom, for its part, had 1.66 million postpaid subscribers by end-September, up 22 percent year on year.

Lorenzana also credited the company’s superior quality of service, citing recent tests conducted by the National Telecommunications Commission. The tests showed that Smart bested rival Globe in all five key performance indices (KPI), covering blocked and dropped calls, signal level and quality, and call set-up times.

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