MTN Group Signs Pan-African Supplier Agreement with Harris Corporation
Harris secures five-year supplier agreement for cellular backhaul and access networks with one of Africa’s largest wireless communications providers
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, North Carolina, 15 August 2006 — Harris Corporation (NYSE:HRS), a leading global supplier of wireless equipment and services, has secured a five-year supplier agreement with Africa’s largest mobile phone operator, MTN Group. Harris will supply digital microwave radios for backhaul and access applications across MTN’s networks in Africa.
The agreement follows Harris’ success in working with MTN throughout Africa, including Cote d’Ivoire, Zambia and Nigeria, where Harris helped to design and construct Africa’s largest backbone network, the Y’elloBahn. Throughout these projects, Harris has demonstrated its commitment to the African market, offering complete design, installation, service and support through local offices.
The relationship between Harris and MTN began in 2003 in MTN Nigeria. To date, the MTN Nigeria network has grown to service more than nine million subscribers. Since Harris and MTN began working together, Harris has received orders from MTN totalling over US$100 million.
“The agreement with Harris is in line with MTN’s procurement objectives, which includes the establishment of strategic partnerships with key suppliers in order to set the platform for value creation within the supply chain, thus contributing to MTN becoming a least-cost operator,” said Dino Colbert, GM, MTN Group Procurement.
“Harris has established itself as a reliable supplier of SDH and PDH microwave transmission in some of the most demanding environments in Africa. The MTN-Harris relationship has expanded since 2003 and on this basis, MTN decided to cement this relationship with a group frame agreement.” said Karel Pienaar, MTN Group CTIO.
The industry-leading TRuepoint™ digital microwave radios from Harris are ideally suited to the African market because of their robustness and rapid deployment capabilities. TRuepoint™ is also one of the most flexible microwave platforms on the market, scaling from 4 to 155 mbits and supporting traditional TDM and Ethernet traffic to enable legacy and next-generation applications to run in parallel.
“Africa has been a focus market for Harris for some time, and this is a great endorsement of the company’s strategy, technology and people in the region,” said Joseph Joseph, regional managing director for the Middle East and Africa for the Harris Microwave Communications Division.
Launched in 1994, the MTN Group is a multinational telecommunications group, operating in Africa and the Middle East. The MTN Group is listed on the JSE Securities Exchange under the share code: “MTN”. As at 31 March 2006, the MTN Group recorded more than 24 million subscribers across its operations in Africa. MTN operates in 10 African countries — Botswana, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Republic of Congo (Congo Brazzaville), Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Uganda and Zambia. In 2005, the MTN Group successfully purchased a 49 percent shareholding in Irancell of Iran. In May 2006, the MTN Group announced it had reached an agreement to acquire Dubai- and London-listed Investcom LLC. The transaction will make the Group one of the world’s largest emerging market players in telecommunications and the leader in Africa and the Middle East, operating mobile networks in 21 countries, covering a population under licence on a combined basis of approximately 488 million people and serving in excess of 28 million subscribers. www.mtn.co.za.
TRuepoint digital microwave radios lead the wireless backhaul industry in terms of both performance and manageability. Its modular, software-selectable architecture allows TRuepoint™ to seamlessly switch between PDH and SDH applications, enabling service providers to use a universal platform to deliver multiple applications throughout their networks. Designed specifically to deliver point-to-point wireless service, TRuepoint radios can deliver service from 4 to 155 Mbps at frequencies ranging from 6 to 38 GHz. In addition, service providers can completely manage TRuepoint™ deployments remotely, with SNMP-based management. Built-in diagnostics and performance management are also available.
About Harris Microwave Communications Division
Harris Microwave Communications Division, one of four divisions within Harris Corporation, is the largest supplier of microwave systems in North America and a leading supplier worldwide. Harris is an international communications and information technology company serving government and commercial markets in more than 150 countries. With headquarters in Melbourne, Florida, the company has annual sales of over $3.5 billion and nearly 14,000 employees — including more than 6000 engineers and scientists — dedicated to the development of best-in-class assured communications™ products, systems, and services. The company’s operating divisions serve markets for government communications, RF communications, broadcast communications, and microwave communications. Additional information about Harris Corporation is available www.harris.com.
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