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DateLine Sunday, 19 August 2007

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Bharati Airtel goes for mobile penetration

Sri Lanka has many opportunities for growth in the telecommunication industry and with Bharati Airtel launching the 2G and 3G services the subscriber penetration level will increase sharply said President, Mobile Services, Bharati Airtel Ltd. Sanjay Kapoor.

He was addressing the media on the company's plans to launch the 2G and 3G services by the end of the current financial year 2007-08 of Bharati Airtel Lanka (Pvt) Ltd., a subsidiary of Bharati Airtel India's largest telecommunication service provider. Kapoor said US$ 200 million will be invested to set up and expand its operations in the country over the next five years.


Sanjay Kapoor addresses the media.
Pic by Sumanachandra Ariyawansa.

"The 2G and 3G services have not seeped properly into the Sri Lankan telecommunication market. Bharati will offer value added services to its new customers and make its contribution to the country", he said.

Kapoor said it was premature to disclose the company's strategic partner but it will look into expanding its network throughout the country.

He said Sri Lankan customers will benefit with the arrival of a new competitor. "Mobile penetration in Sri Lanka is low compared to Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia which is around 40-50 percent and the growth rate is increasing" he said.

Executive Director, Bharati Airtel Sanjay Nandrajog said with the mobile penetration at around 30 percent and growing at approximately two million mobile users per annum, the company is keen to enter the Sri Lankan market.

Bharati Airtel has over 42 million mobile customers and was rated among the best performing companies in the BusinessWeek IT 100 list 2007.

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