Bulgaria’s telecoms market in recent years has been affected by the country’s difficult macroeconomic climate, as well as relatively high unemployment and a shrinking population. These factors have contributed to steadily declining revenue across the sector since 2008. Consumers continue to migrate from fixed-line voice telephony to mobile and VoIP alternatives, while there is increasing pressure on SMS and MMS services from the growing use of alternative OTT messaging services. Mobile network operators are also faced with reduced roaming revenue following the decision by the European Commission, which became effective from June 2017, to bring international roaming rates in line with domestic rates. In addition, the preference among consumers for bundled services has reduced revenue from stand-alone offers. Nevertheless, there are considerable opportunities for telcos to develop these bundled packages, not least of which is the higher retention rate among subscribers.
The telecom sector has benefitted from Bulgaria’s adoption of EU regulatory measures, which has encouraged investment in the sector from other telcos as well as private equity firms. The incumbent Vivacom has been privatised, and the government no longer holds the ‘golden share’ which had enabled it to veto certain key decisions. Although the liberalised market has attracted new market entrants, Vivacom remains the dominant player.
This report provides an overview of Bulgaria’s fixed-line telecom market, including data on regulatory developments, the strategies and performances of the major operators and an assessment of the evolution of fixed-line networks.
Vivacom, Orbitel, Vestitel, A1 Bulgaria (MobilTel).
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Number of pages 40
Last updated 21 Sep 2018
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