Public sector telecom services provider BSNL is aggressively rolling out a marketing plan to bring in rural telecom users for its landline services. It plans to offer them landline connectivity at a monthly installment of Rs20 per month. Alternatively, rural consumers have the option of paying a one-time charge of Rs200 that allows them 20 calls every month.
According to Rajech Kumar, general manager, marketing, BSNL, the new scheme will be launched in villages in August. To statrt with the telcom firm is currently offering the facility in select rural areas of Uttar Pradesh. If it proves popular, the telco plans to extend it to other parts of the country.
To boost the popularity of landline connections, which have been sagging with the advent of the more convenient mobile services, BSNL has started a new ad campaign featuring Bollywood star Preity Zinta as brand ambasador.
BSNL also plans to invest Rs500 crore for its expansion initiatives in rural West Bengal within the next one year.
Earlier this year it had introduced accident insurance cover of Rs50,000 to its subscribers of landline, WLL and mobile services.
Due to capacity constraints, BSNL has yielded ground to its newer private sector rivals like Bharti in the last few years. Though it has had ambitious network expansion plans involving a capex in excess of Rs40,000 crore for the last couple of years, they had been delayed due to litigation inolving losing bidders.
With diferences now resolved, BSNL expects being able to expand its network aggressively in the next three years.
BSNL chairman and manging director Kuldeep Goyal recently said that the new areas of focus will be broadband, network management and managing MPLS networks for enterprise customers.
The telco is also in talks with Cable and Wireless and British Telecom to carry overseas traffic through virtual private networks (VPNs) and managed private leased services (MPLS).