Batelco, Bahrain: Harboring a solution

Batelco, Bahrain

Bahrain Telecommunications Company, Batelco, and Ericsson bring mobile coverage to the Bahrain Financial Harbour.

With the development of Bahrain's harbor into an impressive self contained financial city, telecommunications provider, Batelco teamed up with Ericsson to provide indoor GSM and WCDMA mobile coverage to the Financial Centre.

The new Bahrain Financial Harbour (BFH) is a major development that reinforces Bahrain's position as the international financial hub of the Middle East. The BFH supports the business community on a local, regional and international level and the Financial Centre sits in the heart of the complex.

Regional operator, Batelco needed to implement an In-Building Solution in the Financial Centre which would provide tenants with coverage for both 2G and 3G networks. Ericsson installed a Hybrid In-Building Solution, providing mobile coverage throughout the Financial Mall, 10 storey Harbour House and the two Towers with 53 floors each. On each floor a distributed antenna system was positioned to link back to a Main-Unit through a Radio Remote Unit and optical links, giving optimum coverage on each floor for 2G, 2.5G, 3G and 3.5G services. The Main-Remote RBS concept has provided high-performance coverage, using low power consumption and its easy installation has lowered maintenance and operational costs.

Mark Kane, Program Manager, Ericsson, Bahrain explains: "It is the first time we have deployed this hybrid solution for both GSM and WCDMA. It was a good case to show that Ericsson has the capabilities to implement such In-Building Solutions, especially in such prestigious locations."

The success of this demanding project relied on the excellent team work between the key members and their ability to keep focused on the end product. Following a relationship established 27 years ago, Ebrahim Zainal, General Manager, Batelco Networks explains that Ericsson provided more than just technical support to the project: "We trusted Ericsson to take on such an advanced project. They have the capability both from a technical point of view as well as the experience of completing projects with the right kind of processes and set-up. It was a real team success story."

Ericsson overcame several challenges during the implementation. Restrictions caused in finishing the building meant that some areas due to have antennas installed became inaccessible. Alterations were made to the original design as it was contracted, to ensure high quality coverage without affecting the aesthetics of the building.

As a result of this solution, Batelco has been able to maintain and operate the system easily from a central location at a low cost to the end user. The added advantage of this partnership has been the raised profile of both companies in regard to In-Building Solutions. There is the potential for further work for Batelco as the BFH grows and Ericsson has been invited to tender for more extensive projects in the future.


Customer: Batelco, Bahrain

Customer Objective

  • Implement high performance 2G and 3G in-building mobile coverage in Bahrain Financial Harbour
  • Centralized operation for easier maintenance
  • Cost-efficient system
  • Future-proof solution

Ericsson Solution

  • In-Building Solution based on Main-Remote RBSs and Distributed Antenna System

Customer Benefits

  • Cost-effective coverage
  • Ease of maintenance and operational tasks
  • Improved competitive position leading to potential growth with expansion of the BFH

Customer profile

Bahrain Telecommunications Company, Batelco, is the leading integrated communications provider in the Kingdom of Bahrain and an emerging force among the region's key telecommunications players. With an ongoing strategy to grow overseas, the Batelco group incorporates joint venture operations in Jordan, Kuwait, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. Batelco's specialized services cover the full spectrum of telecommunications solutions for residential and business customers. Services include international roaming, highspeed internet, satellite services, WiFi, MPLS IP-VPN network provisioning and management, plus datacoms services over fixed, wireless and internet platforms, managed services, systems integration and enterprise solutions.

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