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Ajit Shankar, Managing Director and CEO, Ardom Telecom

June 26, 2013
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Ajit Shankar, managing director and chief executive officer (CEO) of Ardom Telecom, is responsible for providing strategic direction to the company and exploring both organic and inorganic growth opportunities. Ardom Telecom is engaged in the operations and maintenance (O&M) of telecom infrastructure. The company offers services in seven circles covering the northern and eastern regions.

Commenting on the company’s key focus area, Shankar says, “In the field of passive telecom infrastructure O&M, power uptime is the biggest deliverable. For us, however, cost optimisation for customers is the major focus area. Since energy accounts for one of the biggest cost factors in the maintenance of telecom infrastructure, the company is focused on optimising the equipment installed at a site.”

According to Shankar, being an unorganised sector, the telecom infrastructure O&M industry faces several challenges regarding statutory compliances, occupational health and safety, and environmental norms. The company, on its part, is focused on addressing these challenges through innovative solutions and effective implementation. Further, he points out that the telecom infrastructure O&M sector is undergoing a transformation. “The next few years will see the emergence of a few large professionally managed O&M companies, which will ensure that the players will have access to better quality of services,” he says.

By the end of 2014, the company is targeting a portfolio of 20,000 sites and 10,000 km of optic fibre. Ardom Telecom will also install 200 km of optical fibre cable in 2013 for the government-led National Optical Fibre Network.

A 1992 batch Indian Engineering Services officer, Shankar has about 20 years of industry experience. He has held senior positions at the Department of Telecommu-nications, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited, Nokia India, XCEL, ATC India and Viom Networks. For him, the most challenging assignment was the restoration of telecom infrastructure in Bhuj, Gujarat, following the 2001 earthquake. His other key achievements include spearheading the merger deal between XCEL Telecom and the American Tower Company.

Shankar believes in a participative style of management and emphasises that Ardom Telecom does not believe in hierarchy. He gives people an opportunity to air their views.

Shankar likes to unwind by spending time with his wife and two children, playing Sudoku and swimming.

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