Bharti Airtel hires Ericsson to run African network
Bharti Airtel has hired Swedish technology firm Ericsson to run its network across 19 countries in Africa in a five-year deal.
As part of the deal, Ericsson will upgrade the Indian company’s Africa network over two years using second-generation (2G) and third-generation (3G) technology, will also provide technology consulting, network planning and design and network development.
The deal aims to cut operational costs and grow Airtel’s data services – the main growth area of mobile networks as revenue for voice calls continues to fall.
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“The new generation equipment from Ericsson will help reduce our total cost of ownership of the networks,” said Manoj Kohli, CEO (International) and joint managing director, Bharti Airtel.
Hans Vestberg, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ericsson, added: "This deal will allow us to assist Airtel with the complex task of managing operations in multiple countries. It also provides an opportunity for us to extend our managed services into new, untapped African markets.”