Today Belize Telemedia Limited presented its new Chief Executive Officer, Rochus Schreiber. Speaking about the importance of the transition within the company in a brief press conference this morning was Chairman of the Board Nestor Vasquez.
“Mr. Shreiber joins the company at a very critical time because we are in the middle of a transformation of our technical infrastructure and of our commercial operations. We are putting in place the foundation to deliver for Belizeans throughout the entire country a world-class mobile telephone and broad band services. As I have mentioned before the success of BTL in delivering these modern services will translate into the success of the country of Belize both economically and socially. I am confident that with the energy and passion with which he will continue the path towards what we call destination greatness. He will be building on the tremendous work and accomplishments of his predecessor Director Anwar Barrow.
Rochus Schreiber has been in the telecommunications business for over twenty years,working around the world including the United States of America, Russia, and Europe. He holds a masters degree in physics and a Masters in Business Administration. Schreiber says he will build on the momentum already achieved at BTL with a focus on continuing the modernization of the company’s nationwide infrastructure over the next two years.
“There are two fronts on which we will be operating. One is the continuation of what we already started which is the mobile network evolution. As you know we already launched 11 new sites in the first quarter of this year which brings our total mobile coverage to 111 sites across Belize which is the most of any of the two networks that operate here and this will continue. So this year we are planning to add more sites, we currently have a plan for 7 more and we are budgeting to add another 50 sites to bring our coverage to every area where there are customers in Belize. So parallel to that we are working on our fixed infrastructure so that is the infrastructure where we have cables. We already started with laying a submarine cable to San Pedro and we will now continue from that to roll out fiber optic networks all the way to the homes of the customers in San Pedro and then very shortly also in Belize City. This will be followed up with a roll out of fiber optic network and fiber to the rest of the country. Overall our plan is to provide high speed internet to every customer in Belize.”
In the coming months, he says, BTL will rollout fiber optic networks in San Pedro and parts of Belize City providing speeds in excess of 100 megabits per second. Schreiber adds that the infrastructural transformations will not only improve services and customers experiences, but contribute to Belize’s economy.
“The focus for me is on accelerating the roll out of the networks so that is my key focus here; how do we get the fiber optic network out the customers as quickly as possible and that is also what will make this company and Belize successful. We had just recently done a study and part of the study was how do we do this roll out but we also looked at the competitive environment and what fiber and broadband connectivity mean for economies globally and the study has shown using data from the world bank and from the IMF is that for every 10% increase in broadband penetration the GDP of the country increased by more than 1%. So every time we increased the broadband penetration and the faster we roll out its not only good for the customer but it reduces the digital divide between Belize and the world and that makes a significant contribution to the country of Belize.”
He adds that he is currently discussing more operating and tactical ideas with the BTL team that will be rolled out in the coming months. He will also look at developing the professional skills of the entire BTL team to further improve the company’s customers’ experience. BTL’s Chairman of the Board Nestor Vasquez says the new CEO Rochus Schreiber was selected after an open recruitment in Belize, the Caribbean, and Europe.