After a decade as Managing Director of TelOne, Chipo Mtasa says she is bowing out “with my head high”.
Mtasa was appointed MD of the state-owned telecoms company in 2013, and leaves at the end of this month after serving her two terms, as required by regulations governing Zimbabwean parastatals.
“As I look back at the last 10 years and the progress that we have made, the challenges that we have conquered, the lessons that we have learnt, the dreams that we have shared and above all the friendships that we have created; a big part of me feels sad to be saying goodbye,” Mtasa says in note to staff.
“I take a bow with my head high because of how you all worked so hard to build the TelOne brand and all the achievements we scored. Being associated with this amazing brand will remain a highlight of my career which I will so proudly acclaim.”
Under Mtasa, TelOne shifted its strategy from the loss-making fixed-line business on which it was founded, to becoming a more broadband-focused company. That plan worked; In 2018, broadband, for the first time, started contributing more to earnings than voice. That year, broadband accounted for 49.8% of revenue, compared to 38% in 2017.
However, like most heads of state companies, Mtasa had to face the impact of legacy debts and a big government phone bill on her company’s financials.
Says Mtasa in her message to staff: “Together we started the journey to transform TelOne and so it is my wish for those that will come after me and indeed the rest of the TelOne team to keep moving forward and do even better.”