Mobile network operator Belarusian Telecommunications Network (BeST), which is 80%-owned by Turkish telecoms company Turkcell, reported falling revenues in FY2011 as the worsening economy in the east European nation saw consumers spending less on phone calls and related services. BeST booked revenue of USD47.89 million last year, down from USD48,92 million in FY2010, while CAPEX was trimmed sharply to USD55.03 million from USD120.01 million previously. Nevertheless, the operator continues to grow its subscriber base, Turkcell said, adding a net 300,000 new users last year for a total of around 1.8 million by 31 December – a market share of approximately 15%.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Belarus Telecommunications Network (BeST) was registered in November 2004 and received licence No. 02140/0184183 to offer GSM services in the 900MHz and 1800MHz bands on 24 March 2005. Having signed a USD234 million network supply contract with Alcatel in September 2005, using funding secured from several Chinese banks, it launched services in the capital Minsk on 11 December and signed up close to 1,500 users in its first few weeks of operations. It is targeting the low end of the market and has attracted most of its customers by offering preferential tariffs for so-called ‘low value’ subscribers.