Motorola Inc.'s (NYSE:MOT) Network Solutions Sector (NSS), one of the world's leading suppliers of GSM (Global System for Mobile Communication) systems, said today that it had signed another 7 digital cellular network expansion contracts with China Unicom worth a total of $258 million. This is the second time in one month that Motorola NSS announced hundred-million-dollar contracts with China Unicom for the enhancement of the operator's GSM network in China. In total, China Unicom awarded Motorola NSS $448 million GSM contracts within one month.
Under the terms of the contracts, which partially involve China Eastern Communications Company Limited (Eastcom) and Guangzhou Jinpeng Group Co., Ltd. (Jinpeng), Motorola will expand China Unicom's GSM 900 networks in five of China's major provinces, which together boast a population of 200 million people. Motorola's market-leading Horizonmacro GSM infrastructure solution will be used to expand the GSM networks in Guangdong, Fujian, Jiangxi, Shanxi and Xinjiang provinces, plus China's special economic zone of Shenzhen.
China Unicom's GSM network capacity will be increased by 3.5 million subscribers as a result of the expansion work, when completed by year-end. Motorola, which supplied China Unicom's first GSM network to Guangdong in 1995, is the number-one system supplier for China Unicom in terms of the system coverage and business volume.
In addition to the GSM 900 network expansions in the five provinces, Motorola also will deploy a GSM 1800 system for China Unicom in Guangdong province. The new GSM 1800 system, which has a total capacity of 800,000 subscribers, represents the first GSM 1800 network deployment for China Unicom.
"We are happy and proud to benefit from China Unicom's continued confidence. These contracts totaling $448 million that are awarded to us within a month by China Unicom further strengthened our position in the China market," said Ruey Bin Kao, Motorola's vice president and general manager of China Network Solutions Sector, "With the increasing demand for not only voice, but data services over GSM, we are looking forward to continuing our relationship with China Unicom to take its network forward into the new generation of mobile communication -- wireless Internet."
Last week (Aug. 14), China Unicom and Motorola launched a commercial General Packet Radio System (GPRS) in Shenzhen. The network, enabled by the core GPRS network solution supplied by Motorola and its strategic alliance partner Cisco, represents the first GPRS commercial system in Asia and the fourth worldwide GPRS launch for Motorola/Cisco alliance in just two months.
Eastcom and Jinpeng have licensing and joint venture agreements with Motorola to manufacture, distribute and provide service for Motorola's GSM and Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) cellular infrastructure products within China. Eastcom has been supplying Motorola's digital cellular equipment in China since 1995, while Jinpeng started providing Motorola equipment in China in 1999.