Mobile Operator Ooredoo Kuwait Cuts 165 Jobs As Market Share, Profits Shrink

The job losses account for about 15 per cent of its workforce.

Ooredoo Kuwait has cut 165 jobs, the Gulf country’s No.3 mobile operator by subscribers said on Tuesday, as its market share shrinks and profits fall.

The job losses account for about 15 per cent of its workforce. According to the company’s 2012 annual report – the latest available – the company employed 1,082 people.

The company – 92.1 per cent owned by Qatar’s Ooredoo – has struggled in its home market in Kuwait following the launch of the country’s third mobile operator, Viva Kuwait, in 2008 which aggressively cut prices to woo customers.

Ooredoo Kuwait said in a statement it had made the job cuts, which include 60 Kuwaitis, to increase efficiency, serve customers more effectively and simplify the organisation.

Ooredoo Kuwait has reported a decline in profits in eight of the past 11 quarters, according to Reuters data. Its shares have fallen 12.5 per cent so far this year.

The company’s share of Kuwait’s mobile subscribers was 31 percent as of June 30, according to the country’s No.1 mobile operator Zain’s earnings statement. Zain had a 36 per cent share and Viva 33 per cent.

At the end of 2010, Ooredoo Kuwait – then known as Wataniya – had a market share of 39 per cent, Zain 44 per cent and Viva 17 per cent, Zain’s annual report shows.

Ooredoo Kuwait also has operations in Tunisia and Algeria.