Etisalat steals the show at CommsMEA Awards

Etisalat and its subsidiaries bag four awards at CommsMEA Awards ceremony in Dubai

Tags: Bahrain Telecommunications CompanyInmarsatKuwait Telecommunications CompanyNokia Siemens NetworksQatar TelecomUnited Arab Emirates
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Etisalat steals the show at CommsMEA Awards The awards recognize the achievements of operators, vendors and individuals in the MEA telecoms sector. (ITP Images)
By  Nithyasree Trivikram Published  December 1, 2010

UAE telco Etisalat dominated at the CommsMEA Awards, which was held during a gala dinner at Emirates Towers Hotel in Dubai yesterday. Etisalat bagged two awards, and two of its subsidiaries, Saudi Arabia's Etisalat Misr and Mobily of Egypt, walked away with one award each.

While Etisalat won the Internet Service Provider of the Year and Overall Operator of the Year awards, Etisalat Misr gained the African Operator of the Year award, and Mobily scooped the Middle East Mobile Operator of the Year award.

This year's Regulator of the Year award was collected by Dr. Mohammed Ahmed Al Amer, chairman of Bahrain's TRA. The regulator has bagged the award for the second year running.

Turk Telekom was presented with the award for the Fixed Line Operator of the Year for providing innovative product bundles and value-added services.

The Most Innovative Non-Voice Service award went to Inmarsat for its BGAN service and the award for Telecoms Technology Investment of the Year was picked up by EBTIC, a jointly established research and innovation centre hosted by Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research.

Nawras of Oman won the Customer Service Provider of the Year award for excellence in customer service, while the Telecom Deal of the Year award was given to Kuwait's newest operator, Viva.

The New Telecoms Service of the Year was bagged by Qtel for a service that automatically updated contact numbers in its subscribers' phones following a change in the country's phone numbering system. The New Entrant of the Year award went to Friendi Group, the region's first MVNO. The operator impressed the judges with its successful launches in Oman and Jordan.

In the vendor category, Nokia Siemens Networks was recognised as the best African Vendor of the Year, while Huawei took the award for the Middle East Vendor of the Year category.

The Lifetime Achievement Award, which is given to an individual who has dedicated many years of service to the telecoms sector, was given to Dr Abdul Malek Al Jaber, CEO of Zain Jordan.

Walid Akawi, CEO of ITP, said: "We are very pleased to host the CommsMEA Awards for the fifth year running, and to see such good support from the industry. These awards recognise the best that the sector has to offer, and the true leadership that the MEA region is showing in the global telecoms sector."

The winners were decided by an independent panel of judges comprising: Milan Sallaba, an independent telecoms advisor and investor; Jawad Abbassi, founder and general manager of Arab Advisors Group; Akshay Lamba, chief architect and head of IT strategy at Sistema/MTS Indian operations; Alan Horne, telecommunications regulator in Vanuatu, South Pacific and former head of TRA Bahrain; and David Tusa, principal at Booz & Company, Middle East.

The CommsMEA Awards 2010 winners:

Most Innovative Non-Voice Service: Inmarsat (BGAN service)

Customer Service Provider of the Year: Nawras

Telecoms Deal of the Year: Viva (Kuwait Telecom)

Telecoms Technology Investment of the Year: EBTIC

Internet Service Provider of the Year: Etisalat

New Telecoms Service of the Year: Qtel

New Entrant of the Year: Friendi Group

African Mobile Operator of the Year: Etisalat Misr

Middle East Mobile Operator of the Year: Mobily

Fixed Line Operator of the Year: Turk Telekom

Overall Operator of the Year: Etisalat

African Vendor of the Year: Nokia Siemens Networks

Middle East Vendor of the Year: Huawei

Regulator of the Year: TRA Bahrain

Editor's Award for Outstanding Achievement: Wataniya

Lifetime Achievement Award: Dr. Abdul Malek Al Jaber, CEO of Zain Jordan

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