UAE’s Etisalat Secures Position as Fourth Highest Value Creator in Global Telecommunications, BCG Report Finds

  • Etisalat has realized a USD $18 billion value increase from 2019-2023, marking a substantial global impact
  • GenAI emerges as the latest value-enhancer for global telcos, transforming customer support into a cost-effective, efficiency-driven domain.

Dubai, May 14, 2024— Etisalat, a leading telecom operator in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has been identified as the fourth highest value creator globally in the telecommunications sector, according to the Boston Consulting Group’s (BCG) 2024 Telco Value Creators Report. With a substantial USD $18 billion in value created between 2019-2023, Etisalat has achieved a significant milestone on a global scale.

The BCG report, titled “A New Formula for Success: The 2024 Telco Value Creators Report,” explores how telecommunications players have overcome challenges, such as stagnant revenue streams and varying investment returns, particularly from sizeable outlays like 5G networks. Despite these sector-wide difficulties, Etisalat UAE has excelled by employing a comprehensive strategy to foster growth.

“The telecommunications industry has witnessed considerable shifts, with digitalization, innovative offerings, and strategic market positioning becoming more critical than ever,” said Nuno Gomes, Managing Director and Partner at BCG. “Our findings reveal that top-performing companies, like Etisalat, have excelled by safeguarding their core business and expanding -sometimes through partnerships – into new markets and technologies. This dual focus has driven their significant value growth over the past five years.”

The report outlines a roadmap for value generation in the telecommunications domain, which resonates with the UAE’s strategic vision of nurturing a knowledge-based economy, putting in motion fundamental digital transformation goals. Through this paradigm, agile telecom operators like Etisalat are well positioned for enduring growth and bolstered market competitiveness amidst a dynamically evolving digital backdrop.

Key Strategies for Telco Success in the UAE:

Drawing from an extensive analysis spanning five years, BCG has meticulously studied the performance and strategic approaches of 59 telco companies worldwide. Through this comprehensive research, highlighted in “Telecommunications Value Creators Report,” BCG reveals a new, pivotal formula for success that will guide telcos in achieving unparalleled value creation and competitive dominance in 2024 and beyond.

• Uphold the Core: Strengthening foundational services with AI to enhance customer loyalty and satisfaction.

• Catalyze Growth Beyond the Core: Capitalizing on the burgeoning digital economy with novel services that resonate with the UAE’s progressive market demands.

• Optimize Asset Usage: Refining existing infrastructure to boost cost efficiency and service delivery.

• Streamline Costs: Employing automation and AI to enhance operational efficacy and curtail costs.

• Transition to Core-to-Cloud: Adopting cloud-based systems to foster flexibility and expandability.

• Implement Cutting-edge Network Design: Progressing network capabilities to facilitate the swift introduction of innovative services.

By incorporating these strategies into their operations, telecom operators in the UAE can generate significant value, aligning with the UAE’s broader vision of establishing itself as a technology hub.

Embracing the GenAI Revolution: Transforming the Telco Landscape in the UAE

Telecom leaders around the globe are tapping into the power of Generative Artificial Intelligence (GenAI), judiciously navigating its potential. Preliminary uses in automating tasks, personalizing offerings, and revamping business processes indicate substantial strides toward commercial prosperity. Given the elevated expectations of customers and the swift pace of digital adoption in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region, GenAI can potentially be a transformative force for telecom companies. Key focus areas include enhancing customer service via AI-driven chatbots, developing potent sales strategies with highly tailored marketing initiatives, and boosting operational efficiency by automating various telecom processes.

Telecom operators in the GCC are advised to incorporate GenAI into their strategies, following the “10-20-70” maxim. This involves allocating 10% of the effort to building algorithms, 20% to establishing tech frameworks and formulating premium data streams, and a substantial 70% to orchestrating and executing operational metamorphosis, focusing on personnel, processes, and change management. The potential gains from GenAI for UAE telecoms are extensive, ranging from cost mitigation to creating innovative products and improved consumer experiences. GenAI is driving rapid transformations across all sectors, with telecoms quickly embracing the trend and setting a benchmark for other digital industries.

“The telecommunications sector is at the forefront of digitalization. To perform and outperform, telcos need to be agile in introducing novel offerings, and robust market-entry strategies are essential,” added David Panhans Managing Director and  Senior Partner  at BCG. “The tailored approaches to both the B2B and B2C segments are by comprehensive strategic planning. This adaptability is paramount in the contemporary digital arena, marked by swift and precise changes. Telcos like Etisalat in the UAE are flourishing and adeptly attuned to market requisites. “

As the telecommunications sector continues evolving and presenting unique challenges, companies like Etisalat stand out through strategic foresight and agility. These industry leaders provide invaluable insights into their successes, illustrating how the amalgamation of regional-specific strategies can forge a path to persistent growth and sectoral preeminence.

About Boston Consulting Group

Boston Consulting Group partners with leaders in business and society to tackle their most important challenges and capture their greatest opportunities. BCG was the pioneer in business strategy when it was founded in 1963. Today, we help clients with total transformation—inspiring complex change, enabling organizations to grow, building competitive advantage, and driving bottom-line impact.

To succeed, organizations must blend digital and human capabilities. Our diverse, global teams bring deep industry and functional expertise and a range of perspectives to spark change. BCG delivers solutions through leading-edge management consulting along with technology and design, corporate and digital ventures—and business purpose. We work in a uniquely collaborative model across the firm and throughout all levels of the client organization, generating results that allow our clients to thrive.

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