• Airtel users to enjoy an enhanced voice quality and faster data access
• Agreement will enable Airtel to put in place a converged network and expanded coverage in rural India
• Ericsson will expand and upgrade Airtel’s network in 15 circles
New Delhi, March 31, 2010: Bharti Airtel and Ericsson further strengthened their strategic partnership with a USD 1.3 billion network expansion contract. Airtel users will enjoy an enhanced voice quality and faster data access. The agreement will enable Airtel to put in place a converged network and expanded coverage in rural India. Ericsson will expand and upgrade Airtel’s network in 15 of India’s 22 telecom circles.
“Our pioneering model of aligning with strategic partners who share our vision and bring in world-class experience and expertise to execute our plans has helped us focus on our customers and market place,” says Sanjay Kapoor, CEO- India & South Asia, Bharti Airtel. “The extension of our fifteen years association with Ericsson is testimony to the strength of the relationship as well as the success of the model. We continue to be delighted with Ericsson’s expertise in network expansion and transformation, helping us to reduce operating expenditures and enhance network quality. This way we can continue to provide a superior customer experience.”
Hans Vestberg, President and CEO of Ericsson, says “Airtel is poised to spearhead the next telecom revolution in India and take the 2G experience to greater heights. In this partnership, we will set a new benchmark for the world in terms of network size and quality, types of services and end-user experience.”
As part of this contract, Ericsson will supply its industry-leading portfolio of energy efficient 2G/2.5G radio base stations, circuit and packet core, microwave transmission and Intelligent Network. In addition, Ericsson will ensure that Bharti Airtel’s core and transport network is 3G-ready in order to reduce time to market and enable the fast rollout of 3G services at a later date. The expansion covers introduction of some of the latest technologies within the wireless world which will bring better quality voice to end users, support more users in using one base station, enhanced data rates using Evolved EDGE technology and other new services.
Ericsson is the largest telecom network supplier supplying, for example, mobile, wire line, DTH, device management and variety of services such as prepaid to Airtel.
About Bharti Airtel Limited : Bharti Airtel Limited, a group company of Bharti Enterprises, is among Asia’s leading integrated telecom services providers with operations in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. In South Asia, the company had an aggregate of over 134 million customers as of the end February 2010, including 124.6 million mobile customers in India. Bharti Airtel has been ranked among the six best performing technology companies in the world by BusinessWeek.
Bharti Airtel is structured as four strategic business units – Mobile, Telemedia, Enterprise and Digital TV. The mobile business offers services in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. The Telemedia business provides broadband, IPTV and telephone services in 94 Indian cities. The Enterprise business provides end-to-end telecom solutions to corporate customers and national and international long-distance services to carriers. The Digital TV business provides DTH services across India. All these services are provided under the Airtel brand. Airtel’s national high-speed optic-fiber network currently spans over 118,337km across India. Airtel's international network infrastructure includes ownership of the i2i submarine cable system and consortium ownership in five global undersea cable systems, SEA-ME-WE 4, EIG, I-ME-WE, AAG and UNITY. For more information, visit www.airtel.in
Ericsson’s multimedia content is available at the broadcast room:
Ericsson is the world’s leading provider of technology and services to telecom operators. Ericsson is the leader in 2G, 3G and 4G mobile technologies, and provides support for networks with over 2 billion subscribers and has the leading position in managed services. The company’s portfolio comprises mobile and fixed network infrastructure, telecom services, software, broadband and multimedia solutions for operators, enterprises and the media industry. The Sony Ericsson and ST-Ericsson joint ventures provide consumers with feature-rich personal mobile devices.
Ericsson is advancing its vision of being the “prime driver in an all-communicating world” through innovation, technology, and sustainable business solutions. Working in 175 countries, more than 80,000 employees generated revenue of SEK 206.5 billion (USD 27.1 billion) in 2009. Founded in 1876 with the headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden, Ericsson is listed on OMX NASDAQ, Stockholm and NASDAQ New York.