Digicel is launching of services in the Netherlands Antilles island of Bonaire, heralding a new era of choice and competition for mobile customers. The company’s launch marks a significant milestone for Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao, connecting for the first-time ever the three (ABC) islands under one seamless GSM network.
With an initial investment of US$2 million, Digicel is delivering to customers high value offerings, such as pre-paid roaming, “Call Me” text messaging option, multi-media messaging, free activation and cutting-edge handsets for as low as $49 NaFl (US$28.00).
The Caribbean company is focused on becoming Bonaire’s number one mobile provider of choice and recently opened three retail stores and 110-top up locations on the island. In celebration of the launch, a “Digicel is Here!” free public concert was hosted on Friday night (July 14th) in the island’s capital of Kralendijk with thousands in attendance.
“We are pleased to bring to the Netherlands Antilles ABC islands superior choice, reliable nationwide coverage, high value mobile services and the best in technology innovation,” said Hans Lute, CEO of Digicel Netherlands Antilles. “We are very committed to growing our business operations, bringing mobile competition to this region and delivering on our goal of becoming the number one mobile provider of choice.”
In April 2006, Digicel entered the Bonaire market through its acquisition of majority shareholding in Antilliano Por NV. The company has operated in the Netherlands Antilles since its 2002 launch in Aruba. In March 2005, Digicel acquired Curaçao Telecom, which was recently re-branded as Digicel.
Kenneth Gijsbertha, Minister of Transport and Communications for the Netherlands Antilles, commended Digicel for building a pan-Netherlands Antilles network that bridges the technology divide from one country to the next.
“We welcome Digicel to Bonaire; finally the ABC islands are now united and Digicel’s entry into the Bonaire market represents the fall of monopoly and the rise of real competition,” said Gijsbertha. “Competition promises to bring better service, more innovation and most importantly of all, lower rates for the mobile customer in Bonaire.”
Digicel’s Bonaire operations are led by Bert Schreuders, former Digicel Head of Customer Relations Netherlands Antilles.
Digicel currently has operations in 20 Caribbean markets. With more than 2 million subscribers, the company’s investment in the Caribbean currently stands at more than US$1 billion.