AAPT is Australia's third largest land line telecommunications company and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Telecom New Zealand. The company is a member of the Infrastructure Assurance Advisory Group for the Critical Infrastructure Protection branch of the Attorney-General's department.


The company was formed by the division of the communications businesses of Australian Associated Press. In 1992 AAPIS was formed with News Corporation and John Fairfax Holdings as majority shareholders with MCI and Todd Capital also possessing shares in the company. According to AAPT's website the company began operating as the first significant competitor to Telstra in the long distance voice and data markets in 1991. The company received a carrier licence on 1 July 1997 and was later listed on the Australian Stock Exchange in November of the same year. In January 1999 Todd Capital sold its entire stake in the company.

In 2000 the company was acquired by Telecom New Zealand in stages and delisted from the stock exchange. Today AAPT claims to be one of only three Australian telecommunications providers to own and operate its own national voice and data network. AAPT has positioned itself a Virtual Network Operator in the mobile market utilising the Vodafone Australia network. In 2006 CommodiTel, acquired AAPT's prepaid customer base.

AAPT's performance in Australia has been considered disappointing, requiring significant investment from its parent company, not providing any returns and has been written down in value by $NZ1.7 billion. In 2006 Telecom considered selling the business but was unable to find a buyer for the company.

With significant take up of DSL services in Australia and the relatively slow DSL services available for resale from Telstra, AAPT sought access to competing DSL services operated by companies investing in local loop unbundling. In November 2006 AAPT signed a wholesale network agreement with Powertel to allow access to Powertel's wholesale network and installed ADSL2+ broadband network.

Powertel subsequently became a takeover target and Telecom responded by making a counter offer of A$357 million (NZ$400 million) for the company. This offer was accepted and concluded in May 2007 with former Powertel boss, Paul Broad appointed CEO, with the AAPT name replacing the Powertel name across the business unit.

AAPT is also a part of the Terria consortium which is currently bidding to build the National Broadband Network.


AAPT Head Office is based in the Ernst & Young building at 680 George Street, Sydney. AAPT Internet switch and network centre is located in the suburb of Richmond, Victoria. AAPT's main current call centres is located in Glebe and Fortitude Valley. AAPT announced its intention in December 2006 to sell the centres in Bendigo and Robina/Varsity Lakes in favour of a new centralized call centre located in Glebe, Sydney. This was completed in early 2007 with customers still being serviced from both centres under the Excelior name until April 2008, when the Robina Centre was moved to other campaigns.

In May 2008 AAPT announced that it would trial outsourcing part of its customer service and Technical Support functions to Teletech in the Philippines.


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