Photo: Vladislav Shatilo/RBC
VimpelCom since July 10, will curtail their free outdoor WiFi network in Moscow. The company explains its decision by reducing the number of clients accessing this service
The company “VympelCom” has decided to shut down its network of free outdoor Wi-Fi in Moscow. Dismantling of equipment (such as hot spots, placed on the facades and roofs) will commence on July 10, reports “Interfax” with reference to the statement of the representative of the company Anna Aybasheva.
According to her, the company has found a more profitable way of optimizing” outdoor Wi-Fi assets in Moscow “with minimal risk for future relations with landlords” in comparison with the sale of assets to third parties. The number of points that will be subject to dismantling, the company did not disclose. Ibysheva noted that VimpelCom is considering different options for disposal of equipment, including a ransom payment dismantling. At the same Wi-Fi network of the airports will continue to work.
The decision to dismantle street Wi-Fi network, the representative of “VimpelCom” explained the reduction in the number of customers using this service, ten times.
“Given the level of penetration of bundled tariffs in Moscow already exceeds 40%, the presence of a free outdoor Wi-Fi ceased to create some additional value for the customers. Over the past year the number of customers using free on-street Wi-Fi has dropped by more than 10 times. The quality of the services was not always guaranteed,” explained Ibysheva.
Street Wi-Fi network “VympelCom” has received in February 2008 after the purchase, for $4.3 billion operator Golden Telecom. For the construction of a Wi-Fi network Golden Telecom has spent about $10 million.
As the “Vedomosti”, the financial performance of its Wi-Fi business in Moscow the company does not disclose. The interviewed experts believe that the project was unprofitable. About this “Vedomosti” told a former employee of “VimpelCom”.
In December last year, the company has sent purchase offers Wi-Fi network in Moscow to a number of operators, reported the newspaper, citing a copy of the document. The price of the asset was not specified. From the document followed that “VympelCom” promises to transfer to the buyer the equipment and leases of technological positions for its placement.