Call drop

Bajans not going with Flow like before

Business is not exactly flowing in the right direction for one local telecommunications company these days.

In its just released preliminary financial results for the first quarter of this year, Liberty Global, the parent company for Flow (Barbados) Limited, reported that its overall list of subscribers –– which impact on its ability to make money –– is down for the January to March review period.

In fact, the telecoms company suffered a loss of 2,000 subscribers, which Liberty Global said was mainly due to a fall off in landline business.

Nonetheless, Flow was able to stabilize its video and Internet platforms, which reported “a significant improvement compared to combined losses of 5,000 [subscribers] in the last quarter of 2016 across video and Internet”, according to the January to March financial results.

Just this week, Flow (Barbados), which is currently undergoing internal restructuring as part of a broader business transformation programme, announced that several employees would be going home, following the sudden departure of Managing Director Niall Sheehy back in March.

At that time, the new man in charge of Flow’s Caribbean operations Garfield Sinclair had complained that outdated laws governing landline business were putting the company at a competitive disadvantage. He also said while Flow was in Barbados for the long haul, it was important that changes be made to the regulations to better reflect the current market conditions.

Sinclair could not say what percentage of the market, or of the company’s business was generated through landlines, but said at the time that like the rest of the world the landline business here had been declining.

The first quarter financial results supported his position.

They also showed that CWC’s revenues had taken a hit with the company recording a four per cent decline in earnings for the period under review, compared to the same period last year. However, no breakdown was given for its individual markets.

Overall, however, CWC added 10,000 subscribers for the quarter, compared to a loss of 20,000 in the last quarter of last year. This compared to an increase of 286,000 subscribers for Liberty Global in Europe and Latin America, up 46 per cent over last year.

The parent company’s revenue also grew by two per cent in the European market.

Mobile subscribers were up in the Caribbean and Latin America, driven by prepaid gains in Panama of about 49,000, and continued postpaid success in Chile of about 13,000 for the period under review. However, this was offset by losses in other CWC markets, including a decline of 10,000 subscribers in Jamaica and 6,000 in The Bahamas.

In Jamaica where the number of mobile subscribers remained above the 900,000 mark, the company blamed the decline on its reduced promotional activity during the first quarter compared to the last quarter of 2016.

This impacted on the group’s revenues, which declined by $31 million.

CWC’s operating cash flow was further challenged by an $8 million vendor credit; higher programming costs primarily related to the Premier League; increased costs associated with Hurricane Matthew and bad debts, as well as increases in “certain other costs”, including network and marketing expenses, ahead of Liberty Global’s £3.5 billion (BDS$8.7 billion) takeover of CWC last May.

“These factors were practically offset by reduced bonus costs in quarter one of 2017,” Liberty Global said, adding that the inclusion of CWC accounted for the “majority” of the changes experienced in its operating, investing and financing activities.

19 Responses to Call drop

  1. Sheldine Dyall
    Sheldine Dyall May 12, 2017 at 2:00 am

    Flow TV don’t have a good package.

  2. Tony Webster May 12, 2017 at 6:01 am

    No surprise. It is now seven or eight weeks since I signed an application for up-grading from copper, to “fibre”…and am still waiting for the phone to ring to set a date, and a time…..

    • Biscuits May 12, 2017 at 12:47 pm

      Good luck!
      They set a date in 2016 and never showed up at our home.
      Subsequent dates were set but to no avail with no apologies offered. Luckily we’re still trudging along but seriously considering a change!

  3. Ione Mitchell
    Ione Mitchell May 12, 2017 at 6:15 am

    Perhaps they should reverse their current customer service policy which says ” We shaft our customers when our employees mess up”.

  4. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner May 12, 2017 at 6:31 am

    Rotten customer service.

  5. fedup May 12, 2017 at 6:45 am

    blah blah blah. Duh say I have to cut down my mango tree so d workmen can run some line or other. I said ok gimme d $ to cut um down.Leh duh wait. Duh int had no right putting some box or other there in dee first place. My cell duz wuk.

  6. Joan Brome
    Joan Brome May 12, 2017 at 6:48 am

    Worst tariff ever stupseee

  7. clint May 12, 2017 at 6:56 am

    The title to this article is spot on: Call Drop. Calls are dropping out during conversations; calling and getting a beep-cal drop; getting a missed call but phone never rang – call drop. You get the picture-cal drop.

  8. Nico HL Beckles
    Nico HL Beckles May 12, 2017 at 8:03 am

    What part of Flow Tv stabilized?? Only stable thing there is the assurance that You wont be able to watch one shite after 10:30pm properly

  9. Caroline Clarke
    Caroline Clarke May 12, 2017 at 8:18 am

    Unless they step up their game and pay attention to the customer cry and stop rerouting our complaints to a customer service call center who don’t even know where St Philip is and it’s in another country and don’t understand a thing about our complaints they will be all for the worst. Only interested in collecting my money on time but not giving me back timely services

  10. Milli Watt May 12, 2017 at 8:43 am

    the wolf complaining………this can’t be a good sign. Or maybe it is

  11. jrsmith May 12, 2017 at 9:58 am

    All of these communication companies , carry the same attitude and behaviour and also bad services……….. In the (UK) its the same rubbish too, fortunate the market is more open, carrying lots of smaller players , which gives that choice …… Still have the big boy cartels……………

  12. Anton May 12, 2017 at 10:43 am


  13. Tony May 12, 2017 at 2:41 pm

    Glad fa dem serve dem rt dey customer service gone to the dogs
    Many of us r not sure which company we r wid LIME FLOW n now we hear bout parent company Liberty Global

  14. gsmaort May 12, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    still cheaper than Digicel..

  15. DE May 12, 2017 at 5:56 pm

    gsmaort, you want cheap rotten service or good service

    • gsmaort May 15, 2017 at 11:22 am

      I don’t need any service from Digicel, I simply buy my mobile plan from Flow each month…I never have a need to speak wth anyone… data works. simple and I save money.

  16. Ndiaz May 13, 2017 at 2:51 pm

    I can’t wait for the new Ozone to open in the summer period, had just enough of Digicel and Flow not caring! Time to go and support a Bajan company…

  17. Dcumers May 20, 2017 at 1:55 pm

    Now the digicel CEO Looney has moved on already! These guys don’t stick around for long especially when they raise prices and loose customers !! Digicel now run by their Play CEO Clementston who has never work on mobile products in his career…. why can’t we just have a local Bajan help out this time !?


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