Beeline converges on internet honeypot

14 Mar 2008

Russia’s second largest cellco Vimpelcom plans to enter the fixed line broadband internet access market under its Beeline trademark, using the infrastructure of Russian and CIS telco Golden Telecom it acquired last month. Vimpelcom’s director general Alexander Izosimov, quoted by RBC, announced that ‘currently we are developing a range of projects to be able to provide [broadband] internet under the Beeline brand’, although he declined to give a timescale for launching services. He also indicated that Vimpelcom hopes to utilise Golden’s strong corporate wireline presence in Ukraine in particular, to strengthen its position in a market where it has less than 5% of active mobile subscribers. Vimpelcom hopes to offer retail broadband products in Russia and Ukraine based on Golden Telecom’s last mile infrastructure, including fibre-to-the-building (FTTB) in combination with its own backbone network, reports Prime-Tass, whilst the GSM operator also intends to leverage Golden’s established corporate broadband sales channels. Vimpelcom’s GSM mobile network footprint covers Russia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Georgia and Armenia. It has also recently entered Vietnam via mobile start-up GTel, a joint venture with Millenium Global Solutions Group of the US. Golden Telecom operates in Russia, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.