ZTE, Alcatel Lucent bag BSNL's big expansion order

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ZTE, Alcatel Lucent bag BSNL's big expansion order
Chinese telecom gear firm ZTE and European firm Alcatel Lucent will supply equipment to BSNL for network expansion involving 10.37 million lines.

"For network, L1 (winner of tender) was ZTE and IN (Intelligent network) it was Alcatel Lucent. Both have accepted advance purchase order. We will soon issue them purchase orders," BSNL Director for Consumer Mobility R K Aggarwal said in New Delhi.

ZTE in a statement said that it will support 10.15 million BSNL's GSM lines across the country. Alcatel Lucent officials were not available for comment.

The order for 10.37 million line is the biggest tender issued by state-run BSNL for expansion of network. The company had earlier issued advance purchase order to five companies, including Huawei, Nokia Siemens and Ericsson. In the purchase order, these companies were given opportunity to share equipment supply deal at the price quoted by winner of tender but other companies refused the offer.

The bids for 14.37 million lines were invited in July 2011. BSNL's last tender was finalised in 2006 for 45 million lines, which was later reduced to 14 million lines in 2007.

After this, the company floated two more tenders for 93 million lines in 2008 and 5.5 million lines in 2010, but both the tenders were cancelled later.

At the end of April, 2012, BSNL had 10.62 per cent market share in the mobile telephony segment with over 97.7 million customers.

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