In the heat of recent news reports of challenges facing Ghana’s fifth GSM telecoms operator, Glo Ghana, its Head of Business Hakeem Kazeem has been recalled to headquarters in Nigeria.
He has therefore been replaced with one time Head of Commercial, Augustine Mamoru, who was part of the Glo Ghana inaugural team but was recalled to the headquarters only to be returned for the Ghana top job in these trying times.
This is the fifth time Glo Ghana has changed its country head since it started operations in Ghana some four years plus ago.
At their launch, George Andah was Head of Business, and he was replaced by Patrick Awotwe, and later John Vasikaran, then Patrick Awotwe came again and left before Kazeen came and has also left for Mamoru.
XYZ News gathered that Kazeem’s recall was only to prevent him from resigning because he penned down his resignation letter and informed his Nigerian employers long before they recalled him.
Kazeen, who described himself as a salesman at his inaugural meeting with Ghanaian Journalists some 30 months ago, promised to take Glo Ghana to the number two spot in 24 months but he probably left Glo in a more challenging state for his successor.
When he came in, Glo was number five on the market with over 1.62million customers and commanded some 7% market share. At the time Kazeem left, Glo Ghana’s subscriber base had dropped to 1.45million and its market share had also fallen to 4.47%.
Over the period, all the other GSM players have grown subscriber base and market share except Glo.
The most recent NCA market share trends indicates Glo’s sub base has gone further down to 1.397million and market share has consequently dropped to 4.26 per cent.
Beside those losses, Glo under Kazeem also closed down a number of its GloWorld Shops in parts of the country, including Dansoman in Accra and Adum in Kumasi, and was reportedly gearing up to close shops in Madina, Lapaz and Mallam Junction all in Accra, and the Ho shop in the Volta Region.
Meanwhile, some technical staff of the company, who told XYZ News they are looking for new jobs, alleged that Glo started decommissioning some towers in parts of the country ahead of the closure of shops.
“They (Glo Ghana) are on a mission to create a triangle in terms of coverage area and cut out coverage to parts of the nation outside of that triangle,” a technical staff of the company said.
Indeed, the National Communications Authority’s Quality of Service report showed then that Glo had no coverage in five out of nine areas measured in the Eastern region.
Under Kazeem, some very valuable staff also left the company, partly because salaries have not been adjusted since they started operations four years back.
Recently, the newly appointed Head of Activations at Glo, Ofosu Agyekum told XYZ News closure of the shops and decommissioning of density masts were all part of strategies to re-position the brand to serve customers even better.
He pointed out that new shops will soon be opened to bring the brand even closer to the customers.
Insiders had alleged that the headquarters in Nigeria had lost confidence in the Ghana operations, but contrary to that, some recapitalization seem to have come in, leading to the launch of four new products to defuse claims that Glo was packing out of Ghana.
The appointment of new Glo Ghana Head of Business, Augustine Mamoru is also widely being seen as strategic because he is familiar with the terrain, having worked as Head of Commercial in the past.
But Mamoru has the challenge to get the company back on track and into winning ways in the face of an industry that is increasingly becoming competitive, dynamic and even more expensive to run.
Mamoru has to win back the confidence of the existing staff who have not seen any salary adjustments from day one, and the confidence of customers who now have lesser access to GloWorld Shops and the Glo network in certain areas.
It is expected that his coming will herald some more capital injections from Nigeria for operational expenses, as he is said to have been assigned to reposition and re-push the brand on the Ghanaian market.