Mobilink Signs Huawei And ALU for 3G Rollout

Mobilink_logoMobilink has confirmed that its parent company, Orascom Telecom, has outsourced its network, including the design, purchase, deployment, and maintenance of next-generation mobile network equipment and supporting services, for the next 5 years to Huawei and Alcatel-Lucent.

The country was divided into 3 regions out of which 2 have been awarded to the Chinese equipment maker Huawei and 1 is assigned to French vendor Alcatel-Lucent.

Such an award also confirms the fact that when Mobilink bids for 3G license, its services will go on air on Huawei and ALU only.

With respect to the revenues posted, Huawei is world’s second biggest vendor after Ericsson while ALU enjoys 4th spot behind another Chinese giant ZTE.

This tender will further boost China’s footprint in the country as Telenor Pakistan is already undergoing end-to-end nation-wide swap to ZTE with now Huawei adding Mobilink to its list, while already working with China Mobile Pakistan (Zong) and Ufone.

For Alcatel-Lucent, however, it shall prove to be a lifeline for the vendor was on the verge of losing all projects with the only service provider it is engaged with. It has also been reported that ALU is the sole vendor for Mobilink in South and Central regions after having successfully driven out Motorola from Sindh, Faisalabad, Multan and half of Balochistan.

While the rigorous bidding was going on, it was reported that the account of Mobilink’s major outsourcing will also see its permanent resource leaving the doors and they will either be relocated to the respective vendor or shall be laid off.

Our sources in Mobilink added that the operator was said to have included a clause that a fraction of its technical resource will be shifted to the vendor’s payroll on permanent basis. To see what happens in this domain, we shall wait for another 6 months.

Contacts in Mobilink further added that Huawei was ranked top in the third region as well but Alcatel-Lucent proved stronger in the region due to its footprint and the case made on technical expertise.

As reported by an international news agency, the project signing and finalization were to be done last week in Cairo and Islamabad for ALU and Huawei respectively. Total cost for the projects is yet to be shared in public.

In the press release, Orascom Telecom has clearly hinted that Mobilink has ambitious plans for upgrading its network to 3G once the Government of Pakistan decides to auction the licenses.

This news is a massive win for the two vendors as they’ll be responsible for the complete complete end-to-end running of Mobilink’s network. The project involves further renovation, planning and optimization of 2G network, technical introduction of 3G, backhaul services, field operations, transmission planning and optimization, power solutions, managed services, etc.

For the experienced as well as fresh telecom engineers, Huawei and Alcatel-Lucent are the places to be.

Tech reporter with over 10 years of experience, founder of ProPakistani.PK