Malaysia’s Maxis Communications and REDtone have announced the signing of an infrastructure and spectrum sharing agreement that they claim ‘will enable both players to fast track their roll out of ultra-high speed 4G networks throughout the country’. In unveiling the deal, it was noted that both Maxis and REDtone are aiming to inaugurate commercial Long Term Evolution (LTE) services in selected areas of the Klang Valley early next year, with other regions to follow shortly after the initial launch. The partnership, which the companies said had come about in response to the Malaysian government’s call for operators to reduce the duplication of network assets, is expected to enable both Maxis and REDtone to reduce capital expenditures, while maximising the usage of spectrum.
Commenting on the development, Maxis chief executive officer, Sandip Das said: ‘We have been at the forefront of promoting networks to be shared as we have recently commissioned active network sharing on 3G with U Mobile … Sharing will get REDtone up and running quickly and also fetch adequate returns on our investments, besides conserving spends at a national industry level.’ REDtone managing director Dato’ Wei Chuan Beng meanwhile noted: ‘The network sharing and alliance agreement with Maxis is a significant development for REDtone as we build on our broadband business. It will help to address REDtone’s rollout obligation to cover 50% of the country’s population … For REDtone to comply with the 50% rollout requirement, our CAPEX would have been MY390 million (USD120.5 million) as is stated in our detailed business plan. However, this has been mostly replaced by riding on Maxis’ existing infrastructure and leasing the necessary capacity from Maxis.’