SOURCE: Digicel

November 01, 2006 10:00 ET

Digicel Launches First GSM Network in Samoa

Roll Out of Seamless GSM Pan Pacific Network Begins With Flagship Launch in Samoa

APIA, SAMOA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 1, 2006 -- Digicel Pacific Ltd., the rapidly growing mobile operator in the South Pacific, today announced that it has officially started its Pan Pacific roll out with the commercial launch of Samoa's first GSM network.

Digicel Pacific will introduce a wide range of first-to-market, high-value mobile services and products, including free connection charges, per second billing, text messaging (SMS) and cutting-edge handsets. These innovative services will revolutionize the telecommunications experience for Samoan customers.

With its Samoan partner, CSL Mobile Limited, Digicel has built a state-of-the-art GSM network that provides 80% population coverage. Thirty-six retail store outlets are also expected to open across the country.

"Digicel's launch of Samoa's first GSM network will be the start of an exciting new telecommunications era in Samoa with far more Samoans having access to quality and innovative mobile telecommunication services than ever before," said Prime Minister Tuilaepa Malielegaoi.

"Given the strong track record of Digicel's sister group of 22 markets in the Caribbean and Central America, Digicel Samoa will become a great addition to our community bring job creation, investments and community support," he added.

Digicel received a GSM license from the Government of Samoa in April 2006 and subsequently acquired Telecom Samoa. All existing customers will receive a free GSM handset. Digicel Pacific is also attracting new customers with high-value handset offers and pre and postpaid plans.

"We are very excited to be launching with CSL Mobile the first of the Digicel Pacific operations here in Samoa," said Denis O'Brien, founder and chairman of Digicel Pacific Ltd. "This launch represents the first step in what promises to be a very exciting journey. Ultimately, we intend to bring Digicel to more than 23 island nations in the region as mobile markets continue to liberalize."

He added, "For too long, the Samoan customer has had to put up with poor quality and expensive services. Our goal is to deliver customers superior technology and we are passionate about providing them the best mobile phone service. We plan to replicate the tremendous success of our sister company in the Caribbean and place the entire Pan Pacific region at the cutting edge of wireless technology."

Digicel Pacific Ltd. is headed by CEO Ms. Vanessa Slowey. Prior to joining Digicel Pacific, Ms. Slowey was an integral part of the senior team, helping to lead the roll out of Digicel Ltd.'s operations in the Caribbean islands of Anguilla, Barbados, Cayman Islands, Trinidad & Tobago and Haiti.

"The response and welcome from the people of Samoa has been phenomenal," said Vanessa Slowey, Digicel Pacific Ltd. CEO. "Starting today, we are committed to continually exceeding the expectations of our customers in Samoa and playing our role in positioning this nation as an attractive regional business center."

In addition to Samoa, Digicel Pacific Ltd. was granted a GSM license from the Government of Papua New Guinea in September 2006. Digicel was also granted a license in principle from the Government of Fiji in April 2006, as well as an experimental license in the Solomon Islands.

Digicel is a proud sponsor of Fiji Rugby and it is title sponsor of the Digicel Fiji Sevens Team.

About Samoa:
Location: South Pacific
Population: 180,000 (July 2006)
Language: Samoan and English
Economy: Tourism, fishing and agriculture

About Digicel Pacific Ltd.

To date, Digicel has launched GSM services in Samoa. It has a GSM license from the Government of Papua New Guinea, and was granted a license in principle from the government of Fiji in April 2006, as well as an experimental license in the Solomon Islands. Digicel is also a proud sponsor of Fiji Rugby, and is title sponsor of the Digicel Fiji Sevens Team.

Digicel Pacific is committed to delivering a world-class mobile telecommunications services to the South Pacific that will transform the region by placing it at the cutting edge of wireless technology, while challenging competitors in a manner that drives positive business development.

The fast growing multinational mobile telecommunications company has a reputation for competitive rates, unbeatable coverage and superior customer care, a wide variety of products and services, and state-of-the-art handsets.

Digicel Caribbean, the sister company to Digicel Pacific Ltd., launched in 2001 and is now the largest GSM provider in the Pan Caribbean region.

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Niamh Byrne
    + (685) 7762814 (Samoa)