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Infrastructure Awards

Following are mobile contracts awarded in February 2004:Iraq. With Orascom Telecom for a GSM network in Central Iraq.Value: UndisclosedSerbia. With Telecom Serbia for a UMTS network field trial.Value: UndisclosedUnited Kingdom. With 3 UK for an optical multiservice solution.Value: UndisclosedUnited Kingdom and France. With Orange...

Business briefs

L.M. Ericsson said it has signed separate deals with operators in the United States, Switzerland and Nigeria. With operator Econet Wireless Nigeria, the vendor signed a $110 million GSM expansion contract to cover such cities as Lagos, Port Harcourt, Abuja and Kaduna. With Alltel...

Ericsson announces contracts

STOCKHOLM-L.M. Ericsson said it has signed separate deals with operators in the United States, Switzerland and Nigeria.With operator Econet Wireless Nigeria, the vendor signed a $110 million GSM expansion contract to cover such cities as Lagos, Port Harcourt, Abuja and Kaduna.With Alltel, Ericsson...

Nigeria’s poor service quality blamed on thieves

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-Nigerian mobile network operators MTN Nigeria and Econet Wireless have blamed a gang of thieves called the Area Boys for the poor quality of service in some areas of Nigeria.The companies were responding to questions posed by the regulator, the Nigeria Communications...

Econet Zimbabwe prepaid subscribers to be recharged from overseas

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-Zimbabwean mobile network operator Econet Wireless announced subscribers on its prepaid platform Buddie will soon be able to have their accounts recharged by relatives and friends living or working outside Zimbabwe.The system, developed by Econet during the past two years, will be...

Zimbabwean fourth mobile operator plans shelved

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-The Zimbabwean Ministry of Transport and Communications has ruled out the possibility of licensing a fourth mobile network operator in the near future.Dr. Witness Mangwende, the minister of transport and communications, said flatly: "There will be no fourth mobile operator."The minister failed...

Econet Zimbabwe to enhance network capacity

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-Mobile network operator Econet Wireless Zimbabwe announced it has commissioned a new switching center with capacity to carry 100,000 additional subscribers.Douglas Mboweni, Econet chief executive, said the upgrade would not alleviate the network congestion currently experienced by most Econet subscribers in Zimbabwe,...

Econet unveils investment plan for Nigeria’s northern state

JOHANESSBURG, South Africa-Econet Wireless Nigeria announced it will invest US$l0 million in infrastructure in the Bauchi state, situated in the northeast of Nigeria. The investment has been packaged to stimulate growth for GSM mobile services in the state. Bolaji Balogun, chief marketing officer...

Nigeria orders Nitel to pay outstanding debts to MTN, Econet

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has ordered the state-owned telecommunications network operator Nigeria Telecommunications (Nitel) to pay MTN and Econet Wireless more than US$7.9 million as outstanding debts to the GSM operators on traffic from Nitel landlines to the mobile networks.The directive...

Nitel ordered to interconnect

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-The Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) has ordered the incumbent network operator Nigerian Telecommunications (Nitel) to interconnect its mobile network with that of MTN Nigeria Limited and Econet Wireless with a deadline set for 18 October.Dare Imoko, head of public affairs at the...

Zimbabwean mobile licenses threatened

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-Witness Mangwende, Zimbabwean minister of transport and communications, has informed parliament that the regulatory body, the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ), has been dissolved amid allegations of irregularities concerning the licensing of the two independent mobile networks, Telecel and...

GSM gives impetus to call centers in Lagos

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-The arrival of the GSM mobile network operators in Nigeria has been regarded as the impetus behind the sudden increase in telephone call centers in the city of Lagos. A recent survey revealed that the number of telephone center facilities has increased...

Econet Nigeria to add 800,000 subscribers by December

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-After a year of operations in Nigeria, Econet announced it intends to have an additional 800,000 subscribers by December. The network operator currently has a subscriber base of 500,000.Zachary Wazara chief executive of the company, said the addition of 800,000 subscribers would...

Econet lashes out at Nitel over interconnect

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-Econet Wireless Nigeria has blamed the interconnection problems experienced by local GSM operators on the fixed network operator Nitel. Zachary Wazara, Econet chief executive officer, said Nitel is not revealing the truth concerning the 18 nairas (US$0.14) charged per minute and that...

Econet Nigeria extends coverage

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-Econet Nigeria announced it extended its network coverage by connecting the town of Eket in the Akwa Ibom state to its network.The operator's network coverage is now reported to include the cities of Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Ibadan, Warri, Uyo, Asaba, Onitsha,...

Econet Nigeria targets Soccer World Cup mania

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa—Mobile network operator Econet Wireless Nigeria announced it will enter a promotion surrounding the 2002 World Cup soccer event. The company is expected to spend about US$260,000 on prizes for its subscribers.Darlington Mandivenga, general manager of marketing at Econet, said the popular...

Econet secures international traffic with satellite services

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa—Zimbabwean-based telecommunications company Econet Wireless announced it has secured contracts valued at an estimated US$50 million to deliver international carrier and satellite services to customers during the next five years.The contracts will fall under the London-based subsidiary Econet Satellite Services.Jose Gaie, senior...

Econet Nigeria cuts access fee on packages

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa—Econet Nigeria has announced that it reduced the fee of its monthly contract package called Business Parta from US$35 to US$21.Bolaji Balogum, chief marketing officer for the operator, said the reductions are due because Econet had listened to the needs of subscribers,...

Econet set to educate Nigerian mobile subscribers

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa—Nigerian mobile network operator Econet Wireless has unveiled its latest product called Wireless Talk, an informational and educational column published in the local press. The column features background information on GSM technology and is said to be aimed at educating Nigerian consumers...

Zimbabwe mobile market swims against the tide

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa—Zimbabwe is a country on the threshold of total anarchy and economic collapse. With the recent elections, the world is collectively holding its breath to see if the beleaguered country will ever recover from the decades of abuse. Yet within this political,...

Senegal’s Sonatel to install fraud management system

NEW DELHI, India—More operators in Africa are going in for fraud management systems to maximize revenues. Sonatel Mobiles of Senegal in Western Africa will soon deploy fraud management software (FMS) supplied by Subex Systems Limited of Bangalore, India. Econet Wireless in Nigeria and Cyprus...

Nigerian bank offers loans for easier GSM access

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa—Nigerian mobile-phone users have been given an easier route to gaining access to GSM technology thanks to a new loan scheme introduced by local financial institution, First Bank.The product is referred to as the First GSM Acquisition Loan (FGAL) and is available...

Liberalization could spur mobile improvements

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa-Various African countries have begun the task of liberalizing their telecommunications markets with the various governments seeking to court offers from foreign strategic equity partners.However, for the telecoms step of the African renaissance to move forward, analysts believe that more will be...

New player to enter New Zealand market

WELLINGTON, New Zealand—Econet Wireless New Zealand, a subsidiary of Zimbabwe-based Econet Wireless, said it will enter New Zealand's duopoly mobile market. Econet Wireless formed a partnership with New Zealand company Hautaki, which holds third-generation spectrum.Hautaki has given Econet Wireless New Zealand access to the...

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