Grameenphone shares tumble after regulator bans sale of new connections

The price of shares in Grameenphone saw a 2 percent drop after the telecom regulator banned the sale of new SIM cards by the country's top mobile operator.

Published : 30 June 2022, 09:30 AM
Updated : 30 June 2022, 11:21 AM

On Thursday, Grameenphone shares started trading on the Dhaka Stock Exchange at Tk 300.2 but fell by Tk 6 in the first hour before closing at Tk 294.1.

More than 172,000 shares in the telecom company were traded during that time.

The country's premier bourse closed with a turnover of Tk 9.3 billion, with the DSEX, the key index of the DSE, rising 26.4 points or 0.4 percent to cap FY22 at 6376.94.

Grameenphone has been listed on the stock exchange since 2009 and currently accounts for 7.85 percent of the DSE's market cap.

The telecom operator’s customer base was around 85 million as of May, or 46 percent of total connections, the highest among the four mobile phone operators in the country.

On Wednesday, the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission issued an order barring the company from selling new connections, citing the “poor quality” of the mobile carrier's services.

“The quality of Grameenphone’s service isn’t improving despite it being the top mobile phone operator with a large customer base. They’ve failed to develop sufficient infrastructure to provide services to so many customers despite repeated reminders,” said Golam Razzaque, director of the BTRC's Engineering and Operations Division

“We’re receiving complaints about them [Grameenphone] regularly. Dropped calls are frequent [on Grameenphone’s network].”

In response, Grameenphone said it has been "adhering to and staying well ahead of the regulator's QoS benchmark and ITU's international benchmark".

"In addition, GP has also been closely collaborating with the BTRC to constantly improve the network quality and service by acquiring the highest allowable spectrum in the recent auction and taking a series of network modernization steps."

The telecom operator stressed the need for constructive dialogue with the regulator to resolve the issues in the best interest of customers.

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher