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  1. #8
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    Alcatel partners in Algeria

    PARIS -- Alcatel today announced the signing of a commercial partnership with Algérie Telecom to provide Algerian enterprises with advanced communication services aimed at improving productivity, enhancing business, and furthering enterprises adoption of IP services and managed communication services (MCS).

    Algérie Telecom and Alcatel, aware of the changes in business customers' communication usage, aim through this agreement to provide high quality, modern and innovative services by anticipating the needs and responding to the business expectations of the operator's corporate clients. Alcatel delivers an array of user centric services via a comprehensive enterprise portfolio including Unified Communications solutions, Contact Centers, advanced IP Telephony, and IP Networking products. By combining these services into a value added MCS offer, Alcatel will partner with Algérie Telecom to address their enterprise customers' needs and allow them to focus on their core business.

    "Alcatel has a complete enterprise communications offer. Thanks to this partnership, we will consolidate our leader position as the telecommunications services supplier in Algeria. This agreement also accelerates the modernization of business networks and the transformation of the enterprise customers towards IP solutions." said Mr. Kehili, Director, Marketing and quality management, Algérie Télécom.

    "Our agreement with Algérie Telecom is part of Alcatel's enterprise alliance strategy with telecom operators, especially within the framework of our recent introduction of our MCS offerings. As Algeria's telecommunications services continue to grow and modernize, Alcatel is honored to be the primary partner with Algeria's incumbent operator in order to meet the communications and business requirements of Algeria's large enterprises." said Pascal Dussiau, general manager for Alcatel enterprise activities in Africa, Middle East, India and Turkey.

    >>>Source<<<

  2. #9
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    Dialling Algiers

    As plans to partially privatise Algérie Telecom move ahead, many international telecoms operators are competing for a stake in the company and the country's lucrative market.

    Analysts predict that the bidding may reach roughly $3.5bn for the 35% share of the company set to be sold.

    Among the competitors is Dubai's Etisalat, which is interested in increasing its presence in North Africa, according to Algerian state news agency APS. Other competitors may include Deutsche Telekom, Spain's Telefonica, Portugal Telecom and France Telecom.

    The successful candidate will join Algérie Telecom and compete with Egyptian Orascom Telecom (Djezzy) and Kuwaiti Wataniya in the country's active telecoms market.

    Algeria's minister for postal services, IT and communications, Boudjemaa Haichour, held talks with the UAE firm last Saturday. In a statement released by the ministry, the company expressed their willingness to participate concretely on the occasion of the opening of capital of Algérie Telecom.

    According to figures from March 2006, Algérie Telecom operates an estimated 3.5m fixed lines and has some 4m mobile phone subscribers. This leaves plenty of room for growth, as Orascom Telecom Algérie, for example, serves over 8m mobile phone subscribers.

    In the past, Europe's leading telecoms groups would have been the frontrunners in such a deal, but today the Middle East boasts sophisticated operators who are vigorously looking for growth opportunities outside their home markets. For example, Kuwait's Mobile Telecommunications Co (MTC) beat off stiff competition to buy African operator Celtel for $3.4bn last year, while Orascom Telecom and Watanyia both hold interests in Iraq, Tunisia and Algeria. Emerging markets such as Algeria hold strong potential due to their substantial populations, attractive demographics and low rates of penetration.

    The age of new licences is basically over because most of the world is now pretty much fully liberalised, but the Middle East is an area where there are still a few very profitable licenses available, explained Jawad Abbassi, president of Arab Advisors Group, a research company focused on the region's communications markets. The upcoming licences are top prizes if an operator can get them at a reasonable price, because they are all growth markets. It's going to be interesting to see how the Europeans and the rest of the international operators compete for those licences.

    Further evidence of the booming global interest in the Algerian telecoms sector was provided by last week's announcement of the joint venture between France Telecom Mobile Satellite Communications (FTMSC) and Thuraya Satellite Telecommunications. The two companies signed an agreement for FTMSC to provide Thuraya Satellite mobile satellite services in Algeria.

    British Telecom also recently announced plans to open an office in Algeria later this year, seeking to win its own lucrative share of the emerging market. It aims to acquire more localised clout and expand from its regional office in Tunisia. The British group declared its commitment to facilitating knowledge and technology transfer and its desire to participate in the restructuring and modernisation of the telecommunications sector, as well as plans to create dedicated centres for specialised training in technologies related to media and communications. Algeria's mobile market surpassed all expectations in 2005 when it continued to grow by around 200% for the fourth year in a row and achieved 40% market penetration. The country's fixed-line market lags behind the other relatively affluent North African countries, but further developments in this sector can be expected in 2006 resulting essentially from the upcoming privatisation of Algérie Telecom. Improved fixed-line infrastructure will stimulate the country's underdeveloped internet market, as will the introduction of 3G mobile technology, which is currently being tested. International mobile operators will continue to watch Algeria as the country presents opportunities for participation in its promising telecoms sector.

    Dialling Algiers

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    Algérie Telecom opens fire on Egypt

    Ahmed K’hili, marketing and quality controller director in Algérie Télécom attacked the Egyptian landline phone company, Lacom, accusing it of comparative and false advertisement.

    Ahmed K'hili has confirmed that Algérie Télécom has filed an appeal to the control unit of post and telecommunications.

    K'hili, director of marketing and quality control of Algérie Télécom, the historical economic actor in the landline phone sector in Algeria, declared that his company will not tolerate what the Egyptian company Lacom is doing, where it is using a comparative campaign of prices, confirming that the presented prices are false, and this is to mislead citizens.

    K’hili pointed out that his company has filed a complaint and decisions are expected to be made.

    In the context of his speech, K’hili was amazed by the complaints made by Lacom concerning the prices practiced by his company where the Egyptian company demanded that Algérie Télécom increase its prices, because it is loosing money in their business “ and this is not reasonable, and they need to be competitive”.

    >>>Source<<<

  4. #11
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    Boom time for handset sales

    With cellular subscriptions booming across the region, a range of vendors are lining up to capture a share of the lucrative Middle East mobile handset market.

    The Middle East continues to impress as one of the world’s key emerging markets for cellular phone services, driving demand for handsets and related accessories across the region.

    A new report from Arab Advisors Group found there were 85 million cellular service subscribers across the Middle East in 2005.

    Bahrain recorded the highest cellular penetration rate at 105.8% followed by UAE (99%).

    “The Arab cellular markets are growing at a high pace, while the fixed line markets are stagnating,” commented Serene Zawaydeh, an Arab Advisors Group consultant.

    “In 2005, cellular operators added around 34 million subscribers while all the fixed line operators added a mere 2.4 million mainlines. Cellular operators in Algeria, Egypt and Saudi Arabia recorded the largest additions to their respective subscriber base in 2005.

    “Competition in cellular services is a main driver for growth. Several cellular operators recorded high growth rates in 2005. Algerian telco Wataniya Telecom Algérie recorded the highest growth rate, which stood at 413.2%, followed by Iraq’s MTC Atheer (339.1%).

    The growth in cellular subscriptions continues to drive handset sales across the Middle East, and the region’s emergence as a key market for international vendors, according to international market research firm Gartner.

    The company found that mobile phone sales worldwide totalled 224 million units in the first quarter of 2006, a 23.8% increase from the same period last year.

    Sales in the Middle East and Africa were said to have increased 30% over the same period.

    The first quarter results led Gartner to increase its worldwide mobile phone sales forecast to 960 million units for 2006.

    Rival US-based research firm In-Stat backed up these predictions, adding that it expected handset sales to more than double over the next five years.

    The company reported that global handset sales topped US$110 billion in 2005, and predicted this figure to rise to US$136 billion this year. Massive demand from emerging markets should see the sector top US$250 billion in sales by 2001, with SmartPhone shipments surpassing 480 million units for the first time that year.

    The region’s top two vendors, Nokia and Motorola, which accounted for 54.3% of worldwide mobile phone sales between them in 2005, are placing the Middle East and Africa at the forefront of their growth strategies worldwide.

    Motorola has developed low-cost handsets specifically designed for emerging markets in both regions, in addition to heavily promoting its premium Razr and Pebl ranges in mature markets such as the countries of the GCC.

    Nokia has established regional offices in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and the UAE in the last six months in a bid to service its key channel partners and further consolidate its presence in the regional handset and accessories market.

    Tomi Paatsila, vice president, Nokia (Mobile Phones Sales and Market Operations, Middle East & Africa) said the company also planned to expand its range of customised Arab-language handsets developed for local markets.

    >>>Source<<<

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    PARIS (AFX) - Alcatel SA said it has signed an agreement with Algerian incumbent operator Algerie Telecom that aims to encourage Algerian businesses to outsource telecoms systems.

    No financial details were disclosed.

    Alcatel, Algérie Telecom in business telecoms tie-up

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    Ericsson wins Algerian mobile e-mail contract

    Ericsson has been selected by Algerian operator Wataniya Telecom to provide the Ericsson Mobile Organizer (EMO), Ericsson's solution for push e-mail. EMO allows Wataniya's business customers to access e-mail, contacts and calendar conveniently while on the move. Wataniya Telecom is one the first operators in Africa to introduce Ericsson's push e-mail solution.

    Under the agreement Ericsson will provide Wataniya with a complete push e-mail solution including both hardware and application software.

    Joseph Ged, chief operating officer for Wataniya Telecom Algeria, says "As the third operator we must create our position by being distinctive and must differentiate through our data services. EMO is the application that will do this for us."

    Algeria is forecasted to have about 15 million mobile subscribers by the end of 2006, which will be five times the number of landline subscribers.

    "Most Algerians will have their first encounter with e-mail and internet from a mobile device," Ged adds. "We offer customers a unique e-mail account through our Nedjma portal and this has helped us to become the number-one e-mail provider in the country".

    Ged says the fact Ericsson was willing to join Wataniya in the managed-service scenario, sharing the risks and rewards, will help us get services to end users quicker.

    The Mobile World statistics report that Wataniya Telecom ended Q1 '06 with 1.6 million customers - representing a market share of just under 11%.

    Ericsson wins Algerian mobile e-mail contract

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