The Man Behind Claro Puerto Rico | Enterprise


When Enrique Ortiz de Montellano, president and CEO of Claro Puerto Rico, took his first job within the telecommunications business, he obtained a NEC, a tall cell phone manufactured by a Japanese firm positioned 6,705 miles from his native Mexico.

He was 25 years previous and the corporate’s cellular phone was his first ever.

“I had graduated from faculty and was working at a cellular phone firm,” Ortiz recalled with amusing.

At the moment, the younger businessman by no means imagined that the heavy and cumbersome gear he had obtained would become- in a comparatively quick time- an intrinsic a part of our lives.

“At first, it was seen as a service for a sure stage of the inhabitants. Then the mass of it got here and we noticed that it was everybody,” Ortiz recalled within the early days.


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Twenty-five years after that encounter with the machine, Ortiz sat down with weekly journal In a spacious convention room at Claro’s headquarters in Guayanabo to mirror on the evolution of the cellular phone business and the journey that introduced him and his household to the island.

In 2007, Claro’s dad or mum firm America Movil acquired the Puerto Rico Phone Firm from Verizon. A 12 months later, the businessman – who has a level in graphic design and a grasp’s in enterprise and advertising – heads an organization that has 3,000 staff and has branded himself as a pacesetter in telecommunications on the island. “Claro is without doubt one of the prime 10 employers on the island,” Ortiz stated proudly.

Whereas he guards his private life, Claro’s CEO is fast to share his views on the island, noting that Puerto Ricans have robust Latin American roots and predicting that the grounded phone line won’t disappear. “The cellphone modified. At one level, Puerto Rico had 1.2 million traces. Now it has about 600,000 traces, nonetheless lots.”

Throughout his tenure at Telcel, a serious subsidiary of America Movil, Ortiz held varied positions as Head of Company Picture, Director of Advertising for Sonora and Sinaloa, and Regional Director, giving him the chance to study totally different views of the business. Received the chance

“At first, know-how linked bodily places akin to houses and companies. However as know-how advanced and have become wi-fi, it began connecting individuals. Since we have now extra individuals than locations, the market has grown occurred as connections elevated manifold,” Ortiz famous of modifications within the cellular phone sector.

In line with the Puerto Rico Telecommunications Regulatory Board, the island has extra cell telephones than individuals. Final month, the company reported 3,380,477 cellular connections for a inhabitants of three.1 million residents.


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“It’s normal. A few of us have one or two cell telephones and a pill,” Ortiz replied. “Elsewhere, the market penetration (ratio between inhabitants and cellular connections) is massive. In Puerto Rico, it’s 102 p.c. However in Panama it reaches 140 p.c.

It is not simply Puerto Rico and Panama. This can be a worldwide phenomenon. In line with the United Nations, there are over 9.32 billion cellular connections world wide in comparison with the present world inhabitants of seven.8 billion.

Claro’s president didn’t disclose particulars of the corporate’s cellular gross sales, however indicated that it has 1.5 million prospects on cellular, land and different companies.

Relating to the challenges of doing enterprise in Puerto Rico, Ortiz famous the gradual and bureaucratic allow system.

“Cell towers deliver a further part. Some teams, maybe with specific curiosity, oppose antennas. After Hurricane Maria, we noticed individuals on the aspect of the freeway attempting to get nearer to the antennas in an try to obtain the sign. However now that we’re attempting to construct antennas nearer to their houses, they do not need them,” Ortiz stated, dismissing that these constructions may pose a well being danger.

“We’re speaking about towers with permits, building occurring, and we have now these teams protesting them, utilizing cell telephones to name extra individuals to hitch the protest It’s time to resolve whether or not we need to join or isolate Puerto Rico from a community filled with customers,” he stated.

Of their view, AT&T’s choice to go away the island and promote its wi-fi and wireline operations in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands to Liberty Latin America won’t have an effect on prospects.

“They’ve consolidated. They aren’t new to us. On a great be aware, very robust firms will stay on the island. This implies funding and entry to good know-how, in addition to good competitors, will proceed.”

Following the identical consideration, Ortiz famous that Claro is constant its agenda to deliver extra fiber optic to houses and companies to enhance Web velocity and capability. Speaking about cellular, the corporate is engaged on 5G community.

“It is a market with nice buying energy in comparison with Latin America. Individuals love know-how too. It is principally a postpaid market, which is nice. In Latin America, 85 p.c of consumers are pay as you go, however right here over 70 p.c Prospects have postpaid service with month-to-month funds,” Ortiz indicated Puerto Rico prospects.

As in the USA, 30 p.c of cellular customers on the island have an iPhone, whereas the remaining 70 p.c have a tool with the Android working system. “The Android individuals have extra selections and types. The iPhone is only one,” Ortiz defined.



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