Business Irish

Sunday 18 March 2018

Warning for Eircom over how it treats customers

John Mulligan

John Mulligan

Telecoms watchdog Comreg has found that Eircom has been treating its wholesale corporate customers less favourably than its own retail subscribers when repairing faults.

Comreg said Eircom was effectively fixing faults for its own retail customers quicker than its wholesale clients. Eircom's wholesale customers buy broadband capacity and services from the company and then resell them to their own customer base.

Comreg said the practice had occurred between August 2011 and August this year. Eircom isn't meant to discriminate between retail and wholesale customers.

The watchdog said it had notified Eircom that the company had "not complied with its non-discrimination obligations" under Comreg rules.

One of Eircom's biggest wholesale customers is BT Ireland. A BT Ireland spokesperson said yesterday that Comreg's findings showed a "worrying deterioration" in Eircom's service performance.

"This is despite Eircom committing, almost 18 months ago, to reform its wholesale operations."

Eircom was told by Comreg that it has five weeks to state its views regarding the finding of non-compliance. If Comreg is not satisfied at the end of those five weeks that Eircom has complied with its obligations, the watchdog can apply to the High Court to enforce compliance.

Eircom's planned headcount reduction from 5,500 to 3,500 has also raised concerns among some industry players that its capacity to adequately service its network could be negatively impacted by the cuts.

Irish Independent

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