Out of pocket – wages, food waste, lost profit

December 01, 2017

Richard Bentancourt, owner Richies Che Che’s Pizza and Pasta had to close the shop due to no telephone connection via the NBN.


A Mooroopna business owner has lost thousands of dollars in stock and profit, after an error during the rollout of his NBN service forced him to close up shop for two days.

Richard Bentancourt, who runs a pizza shop in Mooroopna, was told by Telstra more than six months ago that he had to change over to the NBN, due to a line redevelopment.

After a visit from two technicians, where both times Telstra had supplied the wrong number for Mr Bentancourt’s business, and an attempt to sort out the issue with the provider, the pizza shop’s phone was disconnected without notice, and is still not connected to the NBN.

After queries from a number of customers who came into the shop, Mr Bentancourt said he contacted the NBN, who said they had no record of his line.

After finally getting onto Telstra, Mr Bentancourt was told his number had been deleted from the system and that it would be off for two days.

He said the reality was unacceptable and that he believed he would not have had to deal with the issue, had the rollout of the service to his home been smoother.

While Mr Bentancourt said his experience with the NBN had been positive at home, there were random drop outs.

‘‘I had to shut the shop on Wednesday, so I’ve been without a phone for two days, and in a takeaway shop, most of my business gets done through the phone,’’ he said.

‘‘My biggest issue is with Telstra, who should be ensuring that this rolls out smoothly. I’m their customer, so while I’m moving onto the NBN, I expect the process to be smooth.’’

Mr Bentancourt said he estimated to be $3000 out of pocket across those two days, taking into account wages, food waste and lost profits.

And though the technician had arrived at his shop on Thursday morning, he said he had been to the ombudsman to form a potential case.

‘‘I can only hope I don’t encounter any more issues after this, I think it will be all trial and error, but what happened in the lead-up here is unacceptable,’’ he said.

Both Telstra and the NBN have been contacted for comment.

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