Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) has signed an agreement to expand Etisalat Misr's GSM/WCDMA/HSPA network in Egypt.


The agreement further strengthens Ericsson's position as the leading supplier of telecom-grade next-generation networks enabling Etisalat Egypt to be a leading operator in technology and innovative services such as mobile broadband in the region. This expansion brings Etisalat Misr's total investment with Ericsson equipment and services to more than EUR 200 million to date.


Under the agreement Ericsson will deliver a complete turnkey buildout of the mobile network,
including GSM and WCDMA/HSPA radio access equipment, microwave transmission and a core
network including Mobile Softswitch, and is also contracted to expand the Convergent Charging and Billing solution. The turnkey solution includes site acquisition, civil works, supply, installation,
testing, commissioning and integration services.


This further enhances Etisalat Misr as one of the first operators in Northern Africa to deploy GSM
and WCDMA/HSPA technologies in its network, providing the highest capacity and data rates for
new user applications, powered by Ericsson's equipment and solutions.


Ericsson has had a long-term co-operation with Etisalat, and over the past few years, the partnership between the two companies has been continuously strengthened on the basis of jointly building world-class mobile networks.


Saleh El Abdooli, CEO of Etisalat Misr, says: "Our latest agreement with Ericsson, one of the world's top suppliers of telecom solutions, is yet another major step forward in aligning the interests of the operator and the vendor partner. The initiative will substantially strengthen Etisalat's leadership position as a provider of high-tech telecom services to its customers."


Björn Hemstad, Chairman of Ericsson's Central Europe Middle East and Africa (CEMA) Region, says: "We are honored to be selected as Etisalat's main partner in Egypt. With Ericsson's long-term close cooperation with Etisalat and our leading technology and solution skills, we are dedicated to supporting Etisalat in building a mobile network for the future, ensuring a clear competitive edge in the market. This contract is a major proof of Ericsson and Etisalat Misr's strategic partnership.


"The Egyptian market is considered one of the most appealing within the emerging markets, heavily backed up by the government's policies and plans. The support of the Ministry of Telecommunications and Information Technologies goes in line with government commitment to speeding up the liberalization of the Egyptian marketplace and creating new job opportunities."


Ericsson is the world's leading provider of technology and services to telecom operators. The market leader in 2G and 3G mobile technologies, Ericsson supplies communications services and manages networks that serve more than 185 million subscribers. The company's portfolio comprises mobile and fixed network infrastructure, and broadband and multimedia solutions for operators, enterprises and developers. The Sony Ericsson joint venture provides consumers with feature-rich personal mobile devices.
 
Ericsson is advancing its vision of 'communication for all' through innovation, technology, and sustainable business solutions. Working in 175 countries, more than 70,000 employees generated revenue of USD 27.9 billion (SEK 188 billion) in 2007. Founded in 1876 and headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, Ericsson is listed on the Stockholm, London and NASDAQ stock exchanges.
 
For more information, visit www.ericsson.com or www.ericsson.mobi.


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About Etisalat, United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Etisalat has been the telecommunications service provider in the UAE since 1976, and has built up a modern telecom infrastructure and established itself as an innovative and reliable operator. Etisalat is number 140 among the Financial Times's Top 500 Corporations in the World in terms of market capitalization, and is ranked by The Middle East magazine as the sixth-largest company in the Middle East in terms of capitalization and revenues. In 1982 Etisalat was the first telecom operator in the region to introduce a mobile phone service, and was one of the early adopters of GSM technology, introducing it to customers in 1994. Since then it has established itself as a regional pioneer by introducing both 3G and MMS in 2003.
 
About Etisalat Misr
Launched commercial 2G and 3G service on May 1, 2007, and is making its presence felt in the mobile market by reaching more than 3.5 million subscribers in less than seven months. In November 2007, Etisalat Misr upgraded to 3.75G, which is the marketing term for High Speed Uplink Packet Access, to keep leading the market when it comes to the most advanced technology and innovation.