Tata India and Marconi to build new optical network

17 February 2003 -- Marconi has been awarded a three year, GBP10m (EUR15m) frame contract to supply SDH equipment to support the development of a new broadband network by Tata Teleservices Ltd,

17 February 2003 -- Marconi has been awarded a three year, GBP10m (EUR15m) frame contract to supply SDH equipment to support the development of a new broadband network by Tata Teleservices Ltd, India's leading industrial and telecoms conglomerate.

Marconi will supply a range of optical equipment, including its STM1/4 and 16s, which will help Tata deal with increasing demand. Subscriber numbers are expected to more than double over the next five years. Growth in mobile subscribers is set to outstrip increases in fixed line subscriptions by a significant margin.

"These are interesting times for Tata," said S. Ramakrishnan, managing director, Tata Teleservices Ltd. "The Tata Group was one of the earliest private sector entrants into telecom services.

"Our ambition is to maintain our leading position in the Indian market for telecommunications services, which is in the ascendancy today. Our agreement with Marconi will contribute towards establishing a world class transmission network."

"Marconi created its Indian subsidiary eight years ago," said Mike Burgess, EVP for Marconi's Asia Pacific territory. "In winning the tender with Tata, we demonstrated a strong track record in implementing SDH solutions in Latin America and across Europe."

In 1995 Tata Cellular (TCL) won the licence to offer mobile services in Andhra Pradesh, later merging with Birla AT&T Ltd to expand market coverage to four regions.

Tata Teleservices Ltd (TTSL) was awarded the licence to provide basic services in Andhra Pradesh in 1997 and Tata Power was the first to set up a broadband network in India, using DWDM technology in the Mumbai metro network.

TTSL has recently started its basic service operations in four new, high-potential areas: Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Gujarat. TTSL recently completed the acquisition of Hughes Tele.com a basic services operator in Maharashtra.

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