AUG. 18, 2012 (The Conway Bulletin) – Swedish telecoms firm TeliaSonera, owner of Kazakh mobile operator Kcell, has invested another $205m in the sector
>>>>TeliaSonera, Sweden’s biggest mobile operator, has spent big in Kazakhstan over the last eight months.
At the end of last year it announced a $1.5b deal to buy the 49% of Kcell that Fintur, its joint-venture with Turkish mobile operator Turkcell, didn’t already own.
Now it has hatched a deal to buy WiMAX systems that cover six cities from Alem Communications, a local
company, for $170m and a stake in KazTransCom, which owns telecoms infrastructure, for another $35m (Aug. 14).
These deals should boost the telecoms sector in Kazakhstan. Although TeliaSonera has said this year that
revenue growth in Kazakhstan has slowed because of price pressures and the expense of connecting new users, the
company is still investing in the Kazakh market.
Investing in WiMAX is, in itself, also an important statement. This is the technology that is supposed to
propel mobile users towards 4G. It should improve speeds and lower costs, putting Kazakhstan at the cutting edge of mobile technology.
It’s still, though, a bold move for TeliaSonera to make — especially in a developing economy.
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This story was first published in issue 23 of the weekly Kazakhstan News Extra. To subscribe and for more information click here