The Dhabi Group has inked a Dh1.1 billion agreement with Ericsson, telecom technology provider, for the expansion of its Warid mobile phone network in Pakistan.
The agreement was signed between Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research and Chairman of the Dhabi Group, which owns Warid, and Bo-Erik Dahlstrom, head of Ericsson Market Unit, Middle East.
The deal, valued at $300 million, will enable Warid to enhance the network capacity and quality for its expanding subscriber base, which is at 15 million currently in Pakistan. Ericsson will supply, install and commission core, radio, microwave and optical transmission network equipment, and take responsibility for its acquisition and civil works.
The contract also includes expansion of Warid’s existing Ericsson Mobile Packet Backbone Network.
With the expansion, Warid Telecom will increase its subscriber base of 15 million by another five million and adding 100 more cities in Pakistan.
Sheikh Nahyan said: “This agreement marks an important milestone in our long-standing partnership and demonstrates the trust and commitment between our companies. It represents Ericsson’s capability to support Warid in all product areas and services in this high-growth market.”
Bashir Ahmed Tahir, Dhabi Group Chief Executive, said the agreement has been signed for the sixth phase expansion of Warid Pakistan. “The work on the project will begin immediately and will be completed within three months,” Tahir told Emirates Business after the signing of the deal.
He also said the company will complete three years of its presence in Pakistan and plans are under way to bid for providing mobile phone and broadband services in neighbouring Afghanistan.
He said the firm is operating in two African countries, Bangladesh and Georgia and plans are under way to enter Nepal and Mauritius.
Dahlstrom said: “This contract reflects the strong regional growth of mobile telephony. We are fully committed to supporting Warid in achieving its business objectives and we are honoured to be selected as Warid’s main partner in Pakistan.”
Rafiah Ibrahim, head of the Warid multi-country account, said: “The deal is significant because it demonstrates Warid’s confidence in Ericsson. It will allow Ericsson to grow with Warid as it moves into new markets.”
Dh1.1bn: The value of the agreement signed between the Dhabi Group and Ericsson to expand the former’s Warid mobile phone network in Pakistan
Deal to expand Warid network in Pakistan