Bharti, Huawei sign network expansion deal

Huawei and Bharti ink partnership deal
INDIAN telecoms giant, Bharti Airtel, has contracted Huawei, a telecoms network solutions provider, to modernise and expand its 2G and 3G network infrastructure in Africa.

Huawei will, under the terms of the agreement, design, plan, modernise and expand Bharti Airtel’s networks throughout the continent.

Huawei will also be responsible for managing Bharti’s operations and maintenance.

Manoj Kohli, Chief Executive Officer and MD at Bharti Airtel says the network expansion pact with Huawei would enhance the customer experience through improved voice quality and extended coverage into untapped areas.

Kohli concedes that the agreement would enable Airtel Africa to rapidly expand its mobile services and mobile broadband footprint in the region.

“The partnership with Huawei takes us one step closer to realising our vision of making affordable and world-class telecoms services available to Africa.

“This partnership will allow us to focus on delivering better customer experience as we leverage the global network management expertise of Huawei,” says Kohl.

The network expansion deal also lays the foundation for the introduction of 3G HSPA wireless broadband services.

“We firmly believe that mobile broadband is a major catalyst for economic growth and development, and with this partnership we will be able to offer world-class and affordable voice and Internet experience to our customers while contributing to the economic growth in Africa,” says Kohli.

Kohli explained that the modernisation and optimisation of networks would give Bharti Airtel the opportunity to lower its operating expenditure and roll-out innovative and exciting customer-centric products and services at affordable prices.

Sun Yafang, Huawei Chairperson noted that the partnership with Huawei would enable Airtel Africa to channel its resources and expertise to its core areas of product innovation, value added services, marketing, branding and pricing, while simultaneously providing world class mobile services by leveraging Huawei’s world class expertise in network management.

“Bharti Airtel is a great operator with tremendous potential and high business value.

“We understand Airtel’s strategic requirements and will match their fast development to achieve a win-win business success between both parties,” says Yafang.

Under the terms of the agreement, Yafang noted that Huawei would deploy its complete GSM and 3G-product portfolio, including BTS 3900 multi-standard radio base stations working with GSM and HSPA technologies.

By: Bimbo Omitooki – Senior ICT Journalist

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