A successful entrepreneur, Dr. Ehsanollah Bayat is the founder and organizational leader of the Afghan Wireless Communication Company. After the fall of the Taliban in November 2001, Afghanistan found itself with some 20,000 functional telephone lines in a country of 27 million people. Less than a month later, Dr. Ehsan Bayat and his company Telephone Systems International, Inc. (TSI), set out to build a broad telecommunications network and ultimately reconnect the country with the rest of the world. Together with the Ministry of Communications, TSI established a joint venture known as the Afghan Wireless Communication Company (AWCC).
During the early years of Afghan Wireless, Dr. Ehsanollah Bayat had to overcome significant structural challenges, such as inadequate power service and damaged transportation infrastructure. Because Afghanistan still lacks an effective banking system and a reliable postal service, Afghan Wireless service almost exclusively utilizes pre-paid calling cards, which subscribers can purchase at retail outlets across the country. Dr. Ehsanollah Bayat also had to address the problem of long-distance communication, which was exacerbated by the lack of telecommunications lines outside the country’s primary urban centers. In spite of its early struggles, Afghan Wireless continued to thrive and grow.
Thanks to the dedication and vision of Dr. Ehsan Bayat, Afghan Wireless has since grown into the largest telecommunications provider in Afghanistan. In less than a decade, Afghan Wireless extended mobile communication services to communities across the country, many of which encountered the technology for the first time ever. Dr. Ehsanollah Bayat also opened cell sites in a number of major urban centers, which created jobs and strengthened local economies.
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