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Nokia and Bharti sign $125 million contract for service expansion

MUMBAI: Bharti Tele-Ventures has chosen Nokia to expand its managed GSM/GPRS/Edge networks in eight circles for a contract worth $ 125 million.

As per the contract, Nokia will provide managed services and expand Bharti's Airtel networks in the circles of Mumbai, Maharashtra (including Goa), Gujarat, Bihar (including Jharkhand) and Orissa over a three-year period.

Additionally, Nokia has also been mandated to provide managed services and expand Airtel networks in the three other circles of Kolkata, West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh.

 

Nokia's managed capacity expansion will further help Airtel cover more than 5,000 towns up from 2,700 across India. The phased expansion into these towns and villages starts immediately and is likely to be completed by March 2006.

The expansion will double Bharti's network capacity, providing reduced congestion, seamless coverage and enhanced quality, to all Bharti customers. As part of the contract, Nokia will continuously deliver radio and core network equipment and services based on Bharti's capacity requirements, delivering a cost-efficient rollout of on-demand capacity.

 

 

Nokia will also be deploying its Connect GSM Solution for expanding network coverage in rural areas in a cost effective manner. This includes solutions for radio access, core network, network management systems and services that will reduce the total cost of ownership for Bharti and allow it to optimally target the low average revenue per user customer.

 

 

Bharti Tele-Ventures president mobility Manoj Kohli said, "To sustain India's economic growth, it is imperative to take the benefits of mobile communications to the rural consumers. We at Bharti realise that and have embarked on a significant network expansion exercise into rural areas. Nokia with its cutting edge technology and optimised network solutions for rural areas will help us deliver economically viable services to the low revenue consumers."

Nokia Networks country director India Ashish Chowdhary said, "Nokia is proud to collaborate with Bharti on its initiative to take mobile services to rural India. Our extensive managed services capability combined with our comprehensive and high quality product portfolio makes a strong business case for Bharti to provide affordable mobile services to these rural consumers. This expansion reiterates Nokia's commitment to India, fulfilling our promise to bring high-quality equipment and services to provide world class mobile services to the Indian consumers."

In 2004, Nokia had signed a $ 275 million contract with Bharti for supply of equipment for two years and for managed services for three years, across the five circles.

Nokia has contracted managed services with 34 clients in 28 countries, and has provided operating services for over 20 operators globally.

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