Merger FAQ

Brand & Management

1. Has Hutch taken over Etisalat?

Yes, Hutch has now taken over Etisalat.

2. Who has management control ?

Hutch management remains in full control of the Company.

3. What will happen to the Etisalat brand? Will it be closed down?

ESL brand will cease to exist effective 1st July 2019 and the brand will be completely removed from the market.

4. Will the two operations be managed separately or as one?

The operations will be managed as one. Once the system and network amalgamation is complete by June only the Hutch brand will exist.

5. What happens to the Etisalat old / loyal customers?

All 072 subscribers will continued to be served by Hutch with superior customer service and enhanced mobile coverage.

6. What will happen to Etisalat arcades?

Etisalat Arcades are already rebranded and taken under Hutch management.

7. Will Etisalat and Hutch outlets be merged? Will there be common touch points for both brands?

All Etisalat and Hutch outlets will be merged into only Hutch outlets. All 078 & 072 subscribers will have common Hutch touch points. These will include 64 dealer offices plus 67 Lanka Bell stores situated island wide for customer care requirements.


1. Do towers also get merged to Hutch?

Yes the two networks will be merged into one larger network. However, the complete network amalgamation will take until the end of the year 2020.

2. Will coverage be expanded?

Yes coverage will be expanded as both networks are merged region by region.

3. When can 072 subscribers start using Hutch network / signal?

Starting July 2019 ( region by region ) both 078 & 072 customers will start to experience the enhanced network coverage including new 4G services.

4. Will Hutch 4G support Etisalat connections?

Yes, where 4G network is deployed and networks merged, Etisalat subscribers will be able to access 4G services by swapping their old SIM for a 4G USIM.

5. Which network will I see on my phone screen now?

Once the Network merger is completed in your area it work read as Hutch – until such time it will read as Etisalat.

Products & Services

1. Do Etisalat customers have to change their SIM’s?

No they do not have to change their SIMs or numbers immediately but those who wish to access 4G services will have to upgrade their SIM to a 4G USIM.

2. Where can I purchase 4G SIMS?

The 4G SIM’s are available with the selected retailers who have the signage saying “SIM Replacement 078/072”.

3. Do I have to pay for the 4G SIM?

No, the SIM can be obtained Free from the selected retailer outlets.

4. How do I change it to 4G SIM ?

You can either request the retailer to help you with the change of SIM or you can do it yourself by following the instruction on the SIM pouch.

5. How long will it take for a 4G SIM change ?

You can change the SIM to 4G almost instantly after following the instruction on the SIM or after retailer completes entering the 4G SIM details.

6. Will existing Etisalat number (072) change to Hutch number (to 078)?

There will be no change in the number prefix. Hutch will continue to retain and support both 078 & 072 numbers same like Dialog 077 & 076.

7. If a customer has both Etisalat and Hutch Sims, what does he do in the future?

He can continue to use both Sims in different devices or use only one of them. It is the customer’s choice.

8. How will it affect reload, Top-up card & SIM purchase? Can both customers use both products?

New common SIM Card & Top-Up cards will be introduced this month (May 2019). Retailers will have to stock one common card for both 078 & 072 numbers.
Both 078 & 072 subscribers can use the same card to top-up their numbers.

9. What are the benefits that I will get as a result of the two companies becoming one entity?

Expanded 2G and 3G coverage, better network quality, larger new 4G network, affordable and innovative product and services, easy access to products and services, 24×7 friendly customer service.

10. Can we use CLIQ and DIGIMORE with 078 network?

Presently these will only be available only on 072 SIMs. We are looking at possibilities to provide it for 078 SIMs sometime in the future. Meanwhile, you can access our value for money nonstop plans.

11. Will calling between Etisalat and Hutch be free?

Yes calling between 078 & 072 will be free if you buy voice packs.

12. I'm an Etisalat customer. Can I pay for my Etisalat number on the Hutch website?

Hutch customers can pay on and Etisalat customers can pay on . This will be unified at a later date.

13. What about my bill and billing cycle? Will it change?

It will remain the same. But may change in the future.

14. Will my tariffs/offers/benefits change?

Existing customers will continue to enjoy their current tariffs/offers/benefits, but changes may apply in future based TRC guidelines. Hutch however will always strive to offer the most affordable packages.

15. Can I use cliQ on Hutch 4G in merged areas?

No, you will not be able to use cliQ on 4G. Your internet session will only be on 3G when you are registered to cliQ.
If you want to use 4G services, you would need to ‘un-register’ from cliQ.

Customer service

1. Will Bill formats and billing cycle change?

For 072/078 the billing cycles will remain the same.

2. Can I purchase 072 VIP numbers under prepaid like HUTCH?

Yes 072 customers will also have access to VIP numbers.

3. Will I get a common bill for my account if I have both connections?

No, you will receive two separate bills for the two connections.

4. In case of issues and escalations, whom should I contact?

Hutch customers-1788 & Etisalat-1727. This may be unified at a later date.