Ecuadorian state-run mobile operator Telecsa (Alegro PCS) expects to deploy its own GSM network by early 2010, company president Augusto Espin told BNamericas. ‘The idea is to start deploying infrastructure in certain areas of the country by the end of the year or the beginning of next year,’ he said, adding that the network should reach 25 cities and around 70% of the population by August 2010. Alegro, which currently offers services over its own CDMA2000-based network alongside GSM services piggybacking on Movistar Ecuador’s network, has already launched an equipment tender for its GSM project, which has so far attracted three responses, Espin said. Earlier this month Alegro announced it was close to signing a strategic partner agreement with Venezuelan state-owned telco CANTV, under which the foreign partner would provide investment capital and knowledge. CANTV’s mobile subsidiary Movilnet is Venezuela’s largest cellco by subscribers and launched a GSM network alongside its existing CDMA2000-based services last December.