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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Etisalat Distances Itself From License Scam


Earlier on Wednesday, a spokesman of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is investigating the scam, said it had arrested Shahid Balwa, vice chairman of the joint venture, Etisalat DB Telecom.
The irregular allocation of 2G licenses and spectrum in 2008 to some Indian operators may have cost the country about US$39 billion, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) said in a report that was presented in India's Parliament in November. Former communications minister A. Raja and two civil servants were arrested last week.
Balwa is managing director of DB Realty, which founded Swan Telecom and later sold a 45 percent stake to Etisalat. The company was subsequently renamed Etisalat DB Telecom.
DB Realty said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange on Wednesday that Balwa was wrongly implicated in the investigations into the 2G licenses.
The CAG report said that some companies including Swan Telecom had benefited from the irregular allotment of 2G licenses and spectrum in early 2008.
Etisalat said Wednesday that it acquired its stake in December 2008, after Swan had applied for and obtained 15 licenses. Etisalat had no involvement whatsoever in the license application process, and purchased its stake in the company in the belief that the licenses had been validly granted, it said.
The company said that it always operates within the laws of the countries in which it functions, and will cooperate fully with the Indian authorities if approached. The company said it was "here to stay" and deeply committed to India.
The Indian government faced allegations this week of another spectrum scam, this time by Antrix, the commercial arm of Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), which entered into an agreement in 2005 with a start-up in Bangalore to provide S-band spectrum from Indian satellites.
The CAG is said to have questioned that an agreement was reached over allocation of spectrum without an auction, which was also a question it raised about the 2G licenses by the Department of Telecommunications in 2008.
Officials of the Department of Space said late Tuesday that it had in fact decided to cancel the agreement in July last year, as it was decided that there were other high-priority and strategic requirements for the spectrum. The actual termination of the agreement may take some time, because of the complexity of the procedures involved, they said.source


One97 Invests In Scottish Mobile Service Firm Ciqual


Mobile value added services firm One97 has invested in Ciqual, a Scotland-based mobile broadband customer service solutions firm along with Google CEO Eric Schmidt'sTomorrow Ventures and current Scottish investors, Par Equity.

One97 has started a $100-million fund with SAIF Partners to invest in mobile services related companies. Though the investment in CIQUAL was not disclosed, the firm invests typically in the range of $500,000 to $5 million.
 
"Mobile broadband and smart phone ecosystem requires whole customer experience to be built from bottom up. We are excited to partner CIQUAL and be part of its success,” Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Chairman and Managing Director of One97 Communications Limited said. The size of the investment was immediately not known. Despite several attempts, the company spokesperson could not be contacted.

This latest round of financing will enable Ciqual to promote and distribute their patented technology, ‘Session Insight’ which delivers the most accurate, real-time, dynamic view of mobile broadband service and user experience.
 
“We are thrilled that multiple investors have come together to recognize and support Ciqual. With our current customers already benefiting from our capabilities, this investment enables Ciqual to promote and deliver our solutions to a larger international user base,” Tom Walls, CEO for Ciqual said.

Ciqual enables Mobile Operators to improve their data services through actual knowledge of the customer experience. CIQUAL combines direct selling with a series of channel partner relationships, including a worldwide channel partner agreement with Nokia Siemens Networks.

Scotland-based Par Equity is a venture capital firm providing financial and intellectual capital to innovative small and medium-sized companies with high growth potential. TomorrowVentures is an opportunistic investment firm with a global focus toward seed and early-stage venture capital investments. 

The deal was advised by the Scottish Investment Bank, a division of Scottish Enterprise which operates Scotland-wide, in partnership with Highlands and Islands Enterprise.

One97, which has filed for a Rs 120 crore IPO, made more than 2.5 times on its investment in Singapore-based tenCube last year. tenCube is a mobile security services company whose product includes WaveSecure mobile security service. It was acquired by McAfee, Inc for $9.5 million in July whereas One97 had invested in late December '09 in the firm.


One97 has also backed Oorja, a customer analytics firm; Paytm, a mobile commerce platform and Oc2ps, a social networking application.

Idea, RCom, Bharti, MTNL react to TRAI recos


 In a development that has huge financial implications for existing as well as new operators, telecom regulator TRAI has recommended fixing the price for 6.2 Mhz of pan-India start-up 2G spectrum at Rs 10,972.45 crore, more than six times the present cost of Rs 1,658 crore. 

In its recommendations to the Department of Telecom (DoT), Trai has also said that every Mhz of additional spectrum (on an all-India basis) beyond the contracted limit of 6.2 Mhz would cost a massive Rs 4,571.87 crore.

Most of the telecom firm, including Bharti, Vodafone , Idea and state-owned companies like BSNL and MTNL, hold extra spectrum beyond 6.2 Mhz and the new norms would put a huge financial burden on these telcos. 

Shares of Bharti Airtel were at Rs 333.65, up 0.11 per cent on the NSE . The scrip touched a low of Rs 324.65 and high of Rs 336.70 in trade so far. 

Idea Cellular was at Rs 66.55, down 1.85 per cent on the NSE. The scrip touched a low of Rs 65.40 and high of Rs 68 in trade so far. 

Reliance Communications was at Rs 108.35, down 1.90 per cent on the NSE. The scrip touched a low of Rs 105.15 and high of Rs 109.80 in trade so far. 

MTNL was also witness profit booking. The stock was at Rs 42.85, down 2.83 per cent on the NSE. The scrip touched a low of Rs 42 and high of Rs 43.60 in trade so far.source

Aircel ready to launch 3G services in one go

Aircel today said the company will launch 3G services before start of worldcup cricket in all 13 telecom circles where company has won spectrum for the services.

"We expect 3G presence in all circles where we have bagged spectrum before world cup begins on 19th February," Gurdeep Singh, chief operating officer, Aircel said today.

When asked about the tariff, Singh said it will be competitive.

Talking about broadband wireless access (BWA) services, Singh said the high speed internet services will be launched by end of this year.

"We want to roll out 3G services first and see the response before launching BWA services which will be available by end of this year. By March, we should be able to decide whether we are going for LTE or wimax for BWA,"Singh said.

He declined to comment on investment the company will pump in for marketing of 3G and BWA services.

Aircel won 3G spectrum in 13 circles in auction for Rs Rs 6499.46 crore and BWA spectrum in eight circles for Rs 3,438.01 crore.source

DIALOGIC OPTIMIZES MOBILE BACKHAUL

(NASDAQDLGC), a leading provider of communications technologies that power advanced networks, today launched a mobile backhaul optimization solution for service providers, the Dialogic® I-Gate® 4000 Session Bandwidth Optimizer Mobile Backhaul (SBO MB). The I-Gate 4000 SBO MB provides for voice and data stream optimization for 3G, 2G and enterprise traffic. Service providers can now leverage existing network infrastructure to quickly and cost-effectively double the bandwidth in the typical Radio Access Network (RAN), providing for improved customer experience as well as the ability to significantly increase the subscriber base, enhancing both short and long-term growth.
"We tested Dialogic's solution both in the lab and in a field trial, and saw a significant bandwidth savings in our network," said Cayetano Carbajo, Technology Director at Telef√≥nica. "Not only were we impressed with the quality of experience, but the solution really does take bandwidth optimization to the next level. It delivers two-fold benefits -- significant cost savings and growth opportunities for new subscribers."
Today's demand for mobile data imposes increasing bandwidth requirements on service provider networks, mostly on the backhaul network. In order to maintain profitability, mobile operators need to minimize their backhaul network investment and operational expenditures (OPEX), all while expanding their network capacity. The I-Gate 4000 SBO MB addresses this issue by reducing OPEX through the consolidation and bandwidth optimization of voice and data traffic, thereby reducing transport requirements. By doubling throughput over existing backhaul links, the solution can also reduce capital expenditures (CAPEX) by eliminating the need to purchase additional equipment. 
"Building on our thirty years of experience in providing bandwidth optimization, this solution is a natural extension of our product offering," said Doug Sabella, President and Chief Operating Officer for Dialogic. "We understand the challenges service providers face and created an innovative, yet practical solution with service providers' budget and time constraints in mind. We're excited to deliver this solution to Telefonica and look forward to more successful deployments in the near future."
As the only 1U platform to provide full redundancy for hardware, software and network failures, the I-Gate 4000 SBO MB provides high reliability for customers. It supports a wide range of traffic types and interfaces, including IP- and ATM-based iub, Abis, Native IP, VoIP, PCM signals and Pseudowire (TDM over IP). Topologies for both Microwave and Satellite transmissions are also supported, including Point-to-Point, Point-to-Multipoint, Drop & Continue, Ring and Data Offload.
Learn more about the I-Gate 4000 SBO MB at the upcoming Mobile World Congressshow, February 14-17 in Barcelona, Spain, Pavilion on the Avenue -- AV103, where product experts from Dialogic will be available to meet with you. 
Also, visit http://www.dialogic.com/mobilebackhaul for more information on mobile backhaul optimization.
About Dialogic For over 25 years, Dialogic (NASDAQDLGC) and its subsidiaries have been providing communications platforms and technology to enterprise and service provider markets. Our portfolio of IP and TDM based multimedia processing and call control technologies enables developers and service providers to build and deploy innovative applications without concern for the complexities of the communications medium or network. This empowers our customers to unleash the profit from video, voice and data for advanced networks.
For more information on Dialogic, visit www.dialogic.com. 

Dialogic and I-Gate are registered trademarks of Dialogic Inc. or a subsidiary thereof ("Dialogic"). Other trademarks mentioned and/or marked herein belong to their respective owners. Dialogic and its subsidiaries encourage all users of their products to procure all necessary intellectual property licenses required to implement their concepts or applications, which licenses may vary from country to country.
This press release may contain forward-looking statements regarding future events that involve risks and uncertainties. Readers are cautioned that these forward-looking statements are only predictions and may differ materially from actual future events or results. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, as well as assumptions that if they do not fully materialize or prove incorrect, could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. The risks and uncertainties that could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements include but are not limited to, potential sales or our Dialogic® I-Gate® 4000 Session Bandwidth Optimizer Mobile Backhaul (SBO MB) and uncertainties described more fully in our documents filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission. More information about these and other risks that may impact Dialogic's business is set forth the "Risk Factors" section in our 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2009 and our 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2010 as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These filings are available on a website maintained by the Securities and Exchange Commission athttp://www.sec.gov. All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to us as of the date hereof, and we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements. (DLGC-IR).source