Update: Ericsson, Nokia bag BSNL's mega-GSM tender?

Unconfirmed reports have put Swedish telecom major Ericsson as the lowest bidder for BSNL's $4.8-billion GSM contract, followed by Nokia as the second lowest.

As the winner Ericsson will now supply 60 per cent of the 45.5 million GSM lines and Nokia the remainder. According to the terms of the contract Nokia will have to match the same price as Ericsson, according to the terms of the tender.

In the quota reserved for a public sector telecom company, Indian telecom equipment manufacturer ITI along with Alcatel will get to supply 15 million GSM lines at the same price as the lowest successful bidder, which could be Ericsson, if it emerges the lowest bidder. BSNL's total requirement is for 60 million GSM Lines.

In August this year, Ericsson had won a $1-billion managed services contract from Bharti Airtel Ltd. and to upgrade its network with mobile softswitch (media gateway and MSC servers), the solution that paves the way to an all-IP network.

On the occassion, Mats Granryd, managing director, Ericsson India, had said that the Bharti order was the first managed services contract in the industry.