Israel-based WiMAX equipment and broadband solutions developer Alvarion Ltd today announced a WiMAX pilot with French operator Bollore Telecom in Marina Port Vauban in the south of France. The pilot trial is based on Alvarion’s end-to-end mobile WiMAX 4Motion solution operating at 3.5GHz frequency band. The trial will allow owners of boats docked in the marina to connect via USB dongles and PC cards, and could potentially be extended to around 350 marinas in France.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, Bollore Telecom is a subsidiary of the French conglomerate Bollore Group, controlled by Vincent Bollore. The operator was awarded twelve licences in 2006, paying EUR78 million for the rights to provide services covering the regions of Ile-de-France, Aquitaine, Brittany, Languedoc-Roussillon, Midi-Pyrenees, Picardy, Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur, Corsica, Auvergne, Limousin, Franche-Comte and Rhone-Alpes. In June 2008 Bollore Telecom acquired eight of the eleven regional WiMAX licences held by HDRR, a subsidiary of the French broadcaster TDF. No financial details were disclosed, but the deal is thought to be worth ‘several millions of euros’.