Nokia signs its first ever infrastructure contract in Vietnam

On 9 August, Finland’s telecommunications giant Nokia announced its first infrastructure deal ever in Vietnam.
     The historical contract, delivery of GSM core network equipment for Vietnam’s largest mobile operator – Vietnam Telecom Services Company (GPC), follows a long presence by Nokia on the handset market in Vietnam.
     The value of this agreement has not been announced yet. It is however a significant breakthrough for Nokia. While the profit margins for mobile phones have shrunk dramatically in the industry over the last decade are infrastructure agreements generally seen as much more profitable. And with a mobile phone penetration of only five percent of the population, prospects for more infrastructure contracts in Vietnam are good.
     Currently six operators run mobile phone services in Vietnam, among them are GPC with the brand Vinaphone and Comvik International Vietnam – a Swedish company – with the brand Mobifone. And Norway’s Telenor recently set up an office in Vietnam, boosting the Nordic telecom presence in the fast growing Vietnamese economy.
     “This contract will open the possibility to boost long-term cooperation between Nokia and GPC,” said GPC deputy director Pham Quang Hao, adding that Nokia will provide international-standard equipment compatible with the VinaPhone network.
     “Nokia has long been present in Vietnam as a mobile phone supplier,” said Brian Ridgway, Chief Representative, Networks, Nokia Vietnam. “We are now proud and pleased to be entering the infrastructure market. By bringing our high-quality and high-capacity switching system to GPC, we are further highlighting the advantages of our networks for operators in new growth market.”
     Currently VinaPhone has coverage in all 64 provinces and cities in Vietnam and linked with mobile operators in more than 54 countries and governed territories. Since its opening ceremony on 26 June 1996, VinaPhone has been rapidly developing its network to meet the demands of the growing market. VinaPhone is now the biggest mobile phone network in Vietnam with nearly 3,000,000 customers.

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