Many telecommunications companies and their regulators wonder whether we can afford everything we are asking companies to do. Companies are adding customers and keeping existing customers connected even when they don’t pay, adding network capacity to accommodate increased traffic, and altering service parameters to facilitate working from home and distance learning. And they are making accommodations for employees to keep them safe during the pandemic.
How can companies manage financially when costs rise and many customers pay less? That was the subject of our first joint PURC-CANTO webinar. We hosted John Winter, Liberty Latin America’s (LLA) Chief Legal Officer, to address this topic. LLA provides service in most of the Caribbean, as well as Central America and Chile.
John discussed what his company is doing to keep customers online, how it is managing operating costs and investment, ways it is managing financing costs, and how it is working with governments to satisfy regulatory needs while working towards ensuring a financially healthy company when the pandemic subsides.
The issue of financial viability has come up in almost every session of PURC’s Next Practices Live, and the approaches that people are taking have varied greatly. Some governments have increased their demands on service providers, while others have focused on common goals. John shared the challenges and opportunities for a company that serves in multiple countries.