Bharti Airtel Enters a $1 Billion Deal with Nokia to Augment Network Capacity

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Bharti Airtel Enters a $1 Billion Deal with Nokia to Augment Network Capacity

Airtel strikes a deal with Nokia

Wednesday, 29th April 2020

Bharti Airtel, one of India’s largest mobile operators, has clinched a multi-year contract with Finnish network equipment maker Nokia to augment capacity, the Indian company announced on Tuesday. The value of the deal amounts to almost $1 billion.


As per the agreement clauses in the deal, there will be a deployment of 300,00 new radio units by Nokia across the country by 2022. As per a statement by Nokia, this will give a much anticipated boost to network capacity as well as do the groundwork for a shift to the next level- 5G.


The agreement is a critical one as per Rajeev Suri, outgoing Nokia CEO, and as demands for digitalization and online connectivity mounts in one of the world’s largest telecom markets, Nokia’s position in India gets further consolidated.


Bharti is devoted to furnishing the best in modern technology to its customers and this particular deal is a giant leap in that direction, MD and CEO of India and South East Asia legs of Bharti Airtel, Gopal Vittal commented. This new distribution of radio units will spread across 900 Mhz, 1800 Mhz, 2100 Mhz and 2300 Mhz and will help in the strengthening and amplification of its 4G services across urban and rural settings in India.


India opens up immense possibilities for the companies, being the second largest telecom market in the world. With a total population of about 130 crores, Nokia anticipates a surge in unique mobile users to nearly 92 crores within the next five years.


The Finnish network giant, which will also play a major role in installation, planning and distribution of the project, breaks new grounds with this deal having suffered a heavy blow in the past six months when it strived to venture into the 5G equipment market which was totally consumed by big Chinese names such as Huawei and ZTE and to a certain extent, Sweden’s Ericson. It was a grueling time for the company as these endeavors on their part vastly contributed in diminishing their 2020 earnings forecasts in October, 2019.


Post that however, Nokia went on to post a full year net profit of 7 million euros followed by an announcement of a change in CEO. Speculations in the market about Nokia raising money for a hostile takeover bid made its share value swell about 12 per cent earlier this month. The company however refused to make any comments on the same.



Source: Economic Times

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