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Can't compete with Telenor

A study of telecom competition reveals that Norway's former monopoly Telenor enjoys a huge advantage over its newer competitors. Of the telecom challengers, only Netcom has managed to earn money.

Telenor earned NOK 17 billion (USD 1.89) over the past five years, while the rest of the industry lost NOK 4.3 billion.

The study was the first on profitability in the Norwegian telecommunications market, four years after the telephone monopoly was lifted.

Telenor's competition, with the exception of Netcom, lost on average 82 percent of every crown invested in 2000. Over NOK 10 billion has been invested by 40 companies in order to grasp 5-6 percent of the Norwegian tele-market in 2000, according to managing director Tore Aarønæs of Norsk Telecom.

"We have examined the profitability of the newcomers over the last five years. 2000 was a worse than average year - in other words, it is getting worse and worse for Telenor's competitors," Aarønes said.

Netcom is the only firm that has managed to take noticeable market share from Telenor. The now Telia-owned mobile phone operator has 25 percent of the mobile market, a slice the firm has maintained over the past 4-5 years.