Beeline, part of the international Veon Group, on June 15 took an important step toward modernizing its core network throughout the country by signing a $10 million contract with Nokia, the world’s leading corporation.
The company will soon be introducing the latest generation of Nokia technologies that will improve customer service, increase network productivity and security and provide readiness for the introduction of 5G technology.
As part of the deal, Beeline Georgia also chose Nokia’s Home Location Register (HLR), making Nokia the sole network vendor for VEON in Georgia. HLR is a critical core component, given its role as the repository for storing subscriber data.
In addition to HLR, Beeline acquires Nokia’s cloud-native Cloud Mobile Gateway (CMG) and Cloud Mobility Manager (CMM) appliance solutions, which provides Beeline the capability to rapidly launch 5G services in the future without making significant changes to the network.
Upgrading the core network through near-zero touch automation and increased operational efficiencies will enable Beeline to meet rising customer demand for much greater bandwidth capacity, service quality and reliability, and enhanced product innovation and services. The upgrade will also help future-proof Beeline’s 4G network, which currently serves 63% of Beeline Georgia’s customers and reaches 90% of the nation’s population.
Deployment of the core network modernization is expected to start in the 3rd quarter of 2021.
The contract signing ceremony took place at Radisson Blu Iveria Hotel in Tbilisi. Kaan Terzioglu, VEON Group CEO, and Mikko Lavanti, Vice President, Head of Central Europe & Central Asia at Nokia, arrived in Georgia to announce the signing of the contract and speak at the press conference together with Lasha Tabidze, Beeline CEO.
At the press conference, the sides pointed out that this new partnership and preparing ground for 5G services in the country will be beneficial not only in terms of introducing latest technologies but for achieving better education opportunities among the society, for business and enterprises and the Georgian economy as a whole.
While working on introducing new opportunities through this partnership, Beeline was traditionally focused on the safety of its customers, which is also one of the priorities of the local government. As a result, they noted the Georgian population will be provided with the fastest and safest services, with their privacy and personal data well protected. Naturally, 5G services will be available only for a small part of the population in the nearest future, however, this new deal is expected to significantly improve and enhance the already available 4G network performance and other features offered by Beeline.
“This is a milestone accomplishment for Beeline, which will bring our subscribers a reliable, steady network, seamless customer experience and services,” says Lasha Tabidze, Beeline CEO. “We are very pleased to have chosen the best-in-class Nokia Corporation as our partner. The solutions from Nokia will provide Beeline with the necessary adaptability, preparedness and potency to meet the demand for enhanced mobile broadband, the Internet of Things and advanced 4G services while enabling 5G capabilities of the future. Most importantly, this new partnership will allow us to offer our loyal customers even more diverse digital services and create more comfort for them in a safe way.
“Regarding our 4G network, which currently covers 90% of Georgia’s population, with the upcoming update through collaboration with Nokia, this service will become of even better quality, while still existing certain weaknesses will be eliminated.”
“We’ve all seen the difficult times due to the pandemic, while mobile internet actually helped us to stay connected and work together during this challenging period,” notes Kaan Terzioglu, VEON Group CEO.
“Today, we’re announcing an increased capacity of mobile internet, almost double, and making it ready for 5G. This is the first 5G-ready network in compliance with globally recognized security policies in Georgia.
“I believe that we have a responsibility to bring 4G for every single citizen of Georgia, rather than focusing on 5G for a few,” Terzioglu adds. “But the infrastructure we’ll be deploying in partnership with Nokia, will make Georgia one of those countries which are on the pioneering level in terms of their readiness for 5G deployment. Our customers in Georgia have an increasing demand for a wider range of experiences built on connectivity and digital services; and this important upgrade to our infrastructure allows us to serve them better, and with a greater internal efficiency.”
Mikko Lavanti, Vice President, Head of Central Europe & Central Asia, Nokia, said: “We’re very pleased to help Beeline with this important step in its digital transformation. During the pandemic, we’ve all learned the importance of telecom. At that time, Nokia started creating technologies that help people globally to respond the new challenges. Today, by announcing this partnership, we’re bringing the latest technologies offered by Nokia to Georgia, which will support Beeline to modernize its network, including its applications, and other services, and bring even more benefits to the local society and the country’s economy.”
As deployment of the core network modernization is expected to start soon, it can be said that Beeline customers (and not only) will experience the benefits of the newly announced partnership themselves in the near future.