Jazz Takes Facebook, Whatsapp, Amazon and AliBaba as Competitors: VimpelCom Co-Founder

Jazz is no longer in competition with local Pakistani operators; instead, it is set to take on with Google, Facebook, Whatsapp, Amazon and other tech giants, said Augie K Fabela, the co-founder and Chairman of VimpelCom.

VimpelCom is boldly transitioning away from a traditional telco to an internet tech company, Mr. Fabela said while speaking with media in Islamabad today.

He is on a two day visit to Pakistan, primarily to be part of inauguration of National Incubation Center in Islamabad tomorrow.

Mr. Fabela is an entrepreneur himself and co-founded VimpelCom when he was just 24.

While outlining the digital strategy of Jazz, Mr. Fabela said the Pakistani arm of VimpelCom will be able to lead a trillion dollar industry by virtue of the fact that it is going to turn the model away from conventional telecom company — that used to provide connectivity only — to become a company that will offer irresistible services to its consumers.

“Re-positioning and re-birth of Jazz is to bring back the entrepreneurial spirit, pioneering zeal and innovation culture that is true to what our future is going to be like!”, said Mr. Fabela.

VimpelCom Chairman said that Jazz — which is single best performing company in VimpelCom group — will ultimately be able of offer all sorts of services that its consumers will need in a digital world.

He said that the trust that Jazz has earned over the years is actually enabling the company to offer consumers with much more richer experience than just the connectivity.

When asked about how these new services — through which Jazz wants to compete with Facebook, Whatsapp etc. — will look like, Mr. Fabela said that his group will offer products and services that will be more tailored, with better understanding of each of the local markets where VimpelCom operates.

He explained that Whatsapp cannot know the Pakistani people and their behaviors better than Jazz. “We will have a platform that will have a local taste with global reach, it could have a lot of similarities but will come with a whole lot more offerings,” he added.

While detailing further, the co-founder of VimpelCom said that his group will offer array of services, including basic communication, entertainment, health, education, financial services and more revolutionary things that will be tailored to what the people need rather than “one size fits all” stuff.

“We don’t think one size fits all is the future and this is how we are going to gain the trust and affinity of the consumers”, he added.

When asked about how Jazz will monetize such services when there are free alternatives available, Mr. Fabela said that Jazz plans to deliver such value for the consumers that they will ultimately move away from free services.

“We have a vision on how to get there, and if we don’t get to that then we won’t be able to monetize such services, which will be pretty much end of it”, said Mr. Fabela.

He agreed that its a huge challenge because companies that Jazz is competing with are giants “and yes they are offering services for free for now but we think we will have a proposition and value that consumers are going to stick with our services as compared to any free alternatives”, he added.

When asked about how Jazz is going to deal with low consumer readiness, i.e. what if they have the smartphone, 3G or 4G connectivity but don’t know how to productively use it,  Mr. Fabela said that his group will keep investing on user awareness.

He said that consumer readiness is not a local challenge but in fact his group is dealing with it in other markets as well. “We can actually take the digital divide and turn it into strong digital dividend for the people of Pakistan”, said Mr. Fabela.

Mr. Fabela recognized that Jazz has advanced tremendously in digital transformation. “We actually have taken people from Jazz up into the group headquarters to help us lead the transformation”, he added.

Tech reporter with over 10 years of experience, founder of ProPakistani.PK


  • Baba sathiya gya..

    • Exactly.

    • Ishtiaq

      Yeh tou aisay hi hogaya jaisay chuha haathi say takar leney ki baat kar raha ho.

  • Than friends he did not had any idea what he was talking about. What mobilink have against google,fb,whatsapp, amazon or alibaba. To compete with google they need to setup a search engine, for FB they need to take social media traffic away for FB to their own network, plus neither they have a ecommerce platform nor a massenger.. So its tree what in another comment @ehteshamulhaq:disqus said. :-)

    • Shafaqat Ali

      I am really not sure if Mobilink is market ready for the services listed in this article however the market is definitely ready. Tailored social media platform coupled with communication tools and ecommerce is need of the hour.

      • But they have not revealed any such product or plan. So, if there is a one such plan, reavealing this early was not good. Btw, I do not think they have one.

  • Jazz App to thk sy chalti nai usy to thk ker lo pehly phr aagy ki sochna :D

  • Zafar Abbas Rizvi

    51 million users on 5 MHz LTE now. And planning to defeat giants?

    • Ishtiaq

      Hahahhaha. Haan aisa hi hai kuch. Per khwaab tou achay hotay hain.

    • BADAR

      8.5 mhz

      • Zafar Abbas Rizvi

        Its 5 my dear. Do some research. LTE can only be provided on 1.4, 3, 5, 10, 15 and 20 MHz bandwidths. Currently they are only sharing Warid’s 5 MHz 4G towers to Jazz users.

        • BADAR

          Whatever but still Jazz LTE is better than Zong.

          • Tauheed Mukhtar

            ZONG is much better than warid and Jazz LTE.

            • Arsalan Shah

              Zong was excellent even when Jazz LTE was WaridLTE, with much less subscribers/users. Now after the Warid-Mobilink merger, much more pathetic service and congestion of bandwidth can be expected due to a higher number of subscribers/users.

            • BADAR

              How better explain it.

          • Zafar Abbas Rizvi

            Might be in some areas. But for me in Faisalabad Zong speed is better than Jazz and Telenor 4G which are equal.
            Did you ever get this much speed on Jazz or Warid LTE? Abhi abhi ka speedtest hai.
            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3329522d27a078c408e8c06b5958f10494200422248c70ea8896c4e8cea4537e.png

            • kya ho gaya hai bhai g . islamabad mey toh 30 sey ooper jati nahi hai

              • Zafar Abbas Rizvi

                Aap ke saamne hi hy aaj ka screenshot

            • BADAR

              No, but in the starting of Zong 4G about 1 and half years ago I get the speed of more than 45 Mbps. But Now I am getting the speed of 2 to 7 Mbps in Zong 4G and 5 to 12 Mbps in Telenor 3G. 5 to 8 Mbps Jazz 3G and 12 to 25 Mbps of Jazz LTE. But One main difference in Jazz and Zong 4G is that we cannot get better speed or many connectivity issues in 1 or 2 bars of signals but we get at least 8 Mbps to 13 Mbps speed even in 1 signal bar. (Karachi Results)

              Furthermore, i checked Telenor 4G in Faisalabad Near Susan Road and Peoples Colony I get no more than 16 Mbps speed in full signals.
              So the conclusion is that the facts heard by others Zong 4G is best in Downloading speed but worst in browsing. For my views saw the upper statistics. In best browsing and Downloading Jazz LTE is best. even Jazz 3G is not best in browsing because sometimes it takes so long to open sites because of response time matters un Wireless data transmission. Packets data response.

  • Taha Najam

    inb4 CEO of Javed Nihari says they’re competing with Microsoft.

    • Ishtiaq

      Lol. Javed Nihari and Microsoft. Good comparison.

    • Zafar Abbas Rizvi

      Hahahahahahaha

  • Wajahat Ali

    Mobilink is no more, it is acquired by VimpelCom Ltd. a Gaint of telecom industry, and rename to Jazz.

    VimpelCom Ltd. is a global provider of telecommunication services incorporated in Bermuda and headquartered in Amsterdam. It is the sixth largest mobile network operator in the world by subscribers (as of April 2012) with 214 million customers

    Jazz is just a fraction of vimplecom

    Revenue USD 9.78 billion (2016)
    Total assets $33.85 billion (2016)

    • Tauheed Mukhtar

      Mobilink has always been a child company of vimpleCom. VimpleCom has mobilink for many years now. now they just acquired Warid too

      • Arsalan Shah

        I heard it was a child company of Orascom earlier..!

        • Tauheed Mukhtar

          Orascom merged with VimpleCom 6-7 years ago. VimpleCom took over

  • Rehman Saleem Awan

    First Jazz should make sure every City Town and Village is Covered

  • Rehman Saleem Awan

    Which useful service Jazz is Giving for free to its users

  • Rehman Saleem Awan

    Facebook, Whatsapp are totally for free

  • Rehman Saleem Awan

    Alibaba Revenue = 101.1 Billion Chinese Yuan
    FB Revenue = 17.93 Billion Dollars
    Amazon Revenu = 107 billion Dollars
    Mobilink Revenue = 101 Billion ( Rupees )

  • Muhammad Tayyab

    Moaziz Saarif, 15 Feb se Champions pkg pe apka call rate Re1 se Rs1.2/30sec aur SMS rate Rs1.5 se Rs1.8 kia ja raha hai! JazzWarid bundles k liay *630# milaen

    I received this message from JazzCalls. This is what happened When one operator quits the market. Time to switch some other network. Warid Quality will soon be no more.

  • Mr. Fabela How to beat the big brands :) Are you going to join Pakistan politics soon?

  • A company who have a 1 star service in suburbs of Islamabad is talking about taking Facebook, Whatsapp, Amazon and AliBaba as Competitors. Ehtisham ul Haq is 100% right. Dear Jazz/Mobilink please improve your service first then talk about competition I have thrown my Mobilink Sim due to poor service in area where I am living. Thanks