VimpelCom engineers to handle network rejecting Huawei and Nokia

VimpelCom has withdrawn its wireless networks from Huawei and Nokia management in order to handle communications quality itself, Bloomberg reports.
VEON business networkVeon’s Russian unit, which uses Beeline brand, outsourced its management and network development to the two network providers in 2017.

1,600 engineers servicing the networks will move back to internal staff, VimpelCom says.

Beeline’s total mobile customer base declined by 9 percent in 3Q20, due to the previous network quality and service issues that affect customer perception.

Beeline managed to stabilise customer numbers which ended the quarter broadly flat versus 2Q20. Beeline Russia is growing its 4G user base, which expanded by 10 percent in Q3, helped by a switch back to high-speed mobile data networks after last quarter’s strict lockdowns.

VimpelCom earlier said its Capex excluding licenses increased by 37.2 percent in 3Q20. Capex intensity was 28 percent, reflecting continued high levels of network investment throughout 3Q20. Beeline increased the number of 4G base stations by 23 percent as at 30 September 2020.

In Moscow, data speeds in 4G network improved by 18 percent, alongside the roll-out of 5G-ready equipment and 4G launch in the Moscow subway. Nationwide 4G population coverage increased to 87 percent (versus 84 percent in 3Q19) as Beeline remained committed to investments in network improvement.

Total revenue declined by 7 percent. Beeline’s EBITDA decreased by 18 percent, primarily driven by lower revenue, as well as higher structural costs in relation to the increased network investment and higher interconnection costs due to the increased ratio of off-net traffic.