KARACHI - Reliable sources on Wednesday confirmed that Tariq Malik, CEO Wateen Telecom Limited, might be leaving the Group to pursue his entrepreneurial ventures. Although he had conveyed his intention to leave Wateen earlier this year, the Board of Directors of Wateen had persuaded him to stay to strengthen the financial position of the business and find a new leader to fill his shoes. Recently, the Wateen Telecom showed a positive EBITDA margin of 20 percent as per the latest financial accounts and the Sponsors have been convinced on the inherent potential of the business by investing a further Rs2.5bn in recent months. A few CEO candidates of similar vision and competence have been short-listed by the Board of Directors and a new CEO is expected to be announced soon. Under the dynamic leadership of Mr. Tariq Malik, Wateen Telecom has delivered cumulative revenue of USD 588mn (or PKR 43.3bn) and operating profit USD 97.1mn (or PKR 6.9bn) till year ended June 2010. In a matter of only 5 years, the Company successfully launched its WiMAX operations in Pakistan covering in excess of 230,000 customers, deployed a fiber optic network in excess of 10,000 kms across the country, went public with an IPO earlier this year, built an asset base of USD 353m from mere USD 35m initial investment as well as formed a senior management team of seasoned professionals from the industry, with strong leadership skills and technical back grounds. His skills had helped Wateen in negotiating preferential pricing and vendor deferment of $75 m as a Greenfield project. Wateen has secured $108m as vendor financing through reputable organizations such as MCC ($65m) and ECGD ($43m). Wateen continues smoothly with its daily business with focussed attention to customer service and thus its growth as the company prepares to hand over the mantle of leadership to the next leader. This has been possible because through his gifted sense of motivation, experience, professional competence, moral integrity and team play, Tariq Malik established a senior management team of able and skilled experts which has evolved to give heightened response and fullest engagement to all operational matters during the time of the impending change. Having this senior management team Wateen remains a key player in the telecom market and is the preferred carriers-carrier for GSM operators