|Founder(s)||Juan María Bordaberry|
|Key people||Carolina Cosse (President)|
|Owner(s)||Government of Uruguay|
|Divisions||Antel Moviles, Antel Datos e Internet|
ANTEL (Administración Nacional de Telecomunicaciones; Spanish: National Administration of Telecommunications) is Uruguay's government-owned telecommunications company, founded in 1974. The company has a monopoly of landline telephony and data services in the country. They also provide mobile phone services (in direct competition with Claro and Movistar) and Internet-related services, being the only provider of ADSL and land-line data services because of the monopoly situation.
In 1992, under the presidency of Luis Alberto Lacalle, a privatization of all government-owned companies was attempted. However, a later referendum revoked the privatizations law, being Pluna the only company to be successfully privatized to Varig. Antel enjoys a monopoly on land lines in Uruguay.
As of 2008 ANTEL's monopoly status also forbids cable operators even in larger cities, such as Montevideo, to provide data services (Internet) or voice services along with their cable service.
Antel started deploying fiber to the home in Montevideo in 2012, aiming to switch 240,000 clients that year with a cost of US$ 180 million. Previous DSL subscribers keep their contract, or may switch to faster Internet Vera plans: 120/4 Mbit/s for US$ 85/month, 50/4 Mbit/s for US$ 70/month, or 120/2 Mbit/s for US$ 50/month, throttled back to 10% of those speeds after a 350 / 250 / 200 GB cap. IP television, voice over IP and connections in the department capitals are expected for 2013 and 2014.
ANTEL owns Uruguay's tallest skyscraper, the Telecommunications Tower, which has 160 meters and 35 floors. It is the tallest building in the country. It was designed by architect Carlos Ott. It is situated by the side of Montevideo's bay.
Uruguay installed its first satellite earth station in 1985 followed by two Intelsat earth stations in 1990. Now ANTEL with Aeronautics and Space Research and Diffusion Center and University of Engineering of Uruguay plans to launch first national satellite for telecommunications by 2013.
Antel has been granted monopoly power over most forms of communication carriage in Uruguay, except for wireless voice (mobile only), wireless internet service, wireless broadcast TV and cable TV. The result is a dearth of offerings compared to the diversity seen in first world market oriented economies.
|Service||Antel offering||Private offerings|
|Wireless Telephone (mobile)||Yes||Yes|
|Wireless Telephone (fixed)||Yes||Forbidden|
|Wireless Broadcast TV||No||Yes|
|Internet over landline (ADSL)||Yes||Forbidden|
|Telephone over landline||Yes||Forbidden|
|Broadcast TV over landline||No||Forbidden|
|Internet over coax cable||No||Forbidden|
|Telephone over coax cable||No||Forbidden|
|Broadcast TV over coax cable||No||Yes|
|Internet over fiber||Yes||Forbidden|
|Telephone over fiber||No||Forbidden|
|Broadcast TV over fiber||No||Forbidden|
It is hard to overstate the degree of market control granted by the Uruguayan government to Antel. To put it in US terms, it is as if the original AT&T company had not only been allowed to keep its nationwide monopoly over local and long distance phone service, but subsequently had also been granted a nationwide monopoly over all forms of non-wireless Internet connectivity. In such a world, companies like Time Warner, Comcast or Google (whose Google Fiber Gigabit Internet service is 8x faster down and 250x faster up than the fastest Antel fiber to the home service) would never have been allowed to offer Internet service.
For information on specific competitors to Antel in the services where competition is allowed, see Telecommunications in Uruguay
(All u$s figures for FY2011 performance were calculated using 12/31/11 exchange rate of 1 dollar = 19.903 Uruguayan pesos.)
For the fiscal year ending Dec 31, 2011 Antel had revenues of u$s 899,361,905 (17,897,790,000 Uruguayan pesos). This represents 2% of Uruguay's 2011 GDP, putting Antel in the exclusive league of Uruguayan mega-corporations, with a share of the economy slightly higher than that of Chevron in the US. Calculated on a per-capita basis, in 2011 Antel collected u$s 267 of revenue per inhabitant of Uruguay (for comparison purposes the minimum monthly wage of Uruguay as of 2011 was u$s 300)
In FY 2011 Antel had net profit of u$s 155,630,000 (3,097,523,000 Uruguayan pesos), or 17.3% of revenues. This a very high profit margin for a telecom utility and would tend to indicate a high degree of market and pricing control by the company. An interesting comparable company in the US company is Verizon, which has a similar variety of wireless and wired communications. Verizon however operates in a much more competitive setting and its monopoly franchises (i.e. landline phone in sections of the US) are under tight pro-consumer regulation by the relevant government authorities. Verizon's net profit for the year ending Dec 31 2011 was 2.2% of revenues.
Antel has been involved in high profile and somewhat controversial investments, notably a) the purchase of the Telecommunications Tower, the most expensive corporate headquarters in Uruguay for u$s 102,000,000 and b) more recently (April 2013) the announcement of a planned investment of u$s 40,000,000 in a sports arena.
- Antel llevará fibra óptica a 240.000 hogares en 2012 - El País, 1 February 2012
- Planes de Internet - Antel
- Uruguay. Transportation and Communications
- Uruguay to launch its first satellite in 2013
- Google Fiber web site
- Estados contables 31 de diciembre de 2011 Antel website
- World Bank Uruguay Data
- List of companies by revenue
- Demographics of Uruguay
- List of minimum wages by country
- Verizon results by year Yahoo! Finance
- Construiran el Antel arena Diario El Observador, April 2, 2013
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to ANTEL.|