Sistema Shyam expects 10 mn user base by December

March 25th, 2010 - 9:31 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 25 (IANS) Sistema Shyam TeleServices (SSTL), a joint venture between Russian conglomerate Sistema and India’s Shyam group, expects the user base of its MTS brand to reach 10 million with the launch of services in 11 new circles by the year-end.
“Right now, we are operating in 11 circles and we hope for pan-India expansion by this year-end,” company president and CEO Vsevolod Rozanov told reporters here Thursday.

SSTL, which is completing a year in India, has licences to launch mobile services in all the 22 circles across the country. Its subscriber base now stands at four million.

“We are planning to launch the services in all the 22 circles, double from present 11. We are also expecting the subscriber number to be more than double by year-end,” he said.

MTS services will available by June in Andhra Pradesh. “In other circles, we will roll out services in the third and fourth quarters of the year,” Rozanov added.

The telecom company is present in CDMA space and has no plans to enter the GSM market. But it is planning to expand its broadband wireless services in 100 cities across India by the year-end from present 48.

Recently, on his visit to India, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin had said his country will provide financial aid worth $676 million to help SSTL expand.

“We hope to receive the $676 million aid between July and September after regulatory clearances. We will use part of the amount this year for India expansion and the remaining next year,” Rozanov said.

To fund its expansion, the company is also planning to hit the capital market.

“The IPO launch is likely to happen next year. By this year-end, we will file the draft red herring prospectus with securities and exchange board of India,” he said.

The company expects to receive a $100 million loan from an Indian bank by next week.

Sistema is the majority shareholder in SSTL with a 73.71 percent equity stake.

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