Zain teams with Ericsson for Bahrain LTE launch

Zain, which provides mobile services in the Middle East and North Africa, said it has commercially launched an LTE network in Bahrain in collaboration with Ericsson.

Zain Bahrain last year said it would be investing $100 million (€76.5 million) in the development of its, with the support of various technology providers. The operator also recently said it had received the go-ahead from the country's government to launch an initial public listing.

"This latest enhancement of the 4G LTE network, will see it gradually being rolled out across the Kingdom in order to ensure the highest quality of service at each stage of deployment," the operator said in a statement.

The company added that the LTE upgrade will expand on Zain Bahrain's 3.75G HSPA+ layer, and will also fully modernise the operator's existing infrastructure to facilitate new communication services. Zain's Kuwait and Saudi Arabia mobile operations are also deploying LTE services, the company said.

Zain group reported 42.7 million active customers as of the end of 2012. It has commercial operations in Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and South Sudan. In Lebanon, the company also manages 'touch' on behalf of the government. In Morocco, Zain has a 15.5 per cent stake in Wana Telecom, now branded 'INWI', through a joint venture. Zain is listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange.

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