According to Total Telecom, Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) has approved Rostelecom’s approach to acquire a 50% stake in its sister company, CDMA operator SkyLink, from state-owned holding company Svyazinvest. As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in May 2011 Rostelecom revealed plans to acquire SkyLink, with a view to merging it with its other mobile assets, as acquired through its so-called ‘mega-regional merger’, which closed in April 2011.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Rostelecom hopes that the addition of SkyLink will help Rostelecom to achieve its goal of nationwide cellular coverage by the end of 2015. SkyLink holds frequency rights in the 450MHz, 900MHz, 1800MHz, 1900MHz and 2100MHz bands, covering 96% of the Russian population. The CDMA operator launched GSM services in 45 regions in December 2010, and received permission to roll out a W-CDMA network in March 2011.