Romtelecom, the largest local landline operator, has sold its clients’ outstanding debts to a debt recovery company. The unpaid bills of 24,000 Romtelecom residential and business customers have been bought by EOS KSI Romania. The operator did not make public either the value of the debts or how much of this sum it will recover following the signing of the contract.
“As could be expected during this economic time, the debts to our company have increased but we have in sight a series of initiatives, in line with practices on the market, to address this problem,” company officials told Business Review. However, Romtelecom officials say this is a common practice among telecom operators, and the transfer of the debts was not prompted by the crisis.
According to company representatives, Romtelecom is one of the few operators on the market who offer debtors in dire financial straits the option of paying their outstanding debts in installments, over a period of 6-12 months, without further costs piling up.
If the customer has not paid the bill within 38 days of its issue, the company can suspend the service. Once 83 days have passed, the customer is cut off. “Usually, more than four months pass from when a bill goes unpaid until the debts are passed for recovery to a specialized company,” added the Romtelecom officials.
During this period, the company sends a series of notifications to debtors. Fifteen days between the service is due to be cut off, the client receives written notification of the debt. If the company has alternative contact data, it sends the customer SMS, e-mails or messages through the set-top-box (for TV clients) stating the
sum they have to pay. Debtors are also contacted by phone in pursuit of payment.