Tele2 takes on Moscow’s ‘big three’ mobile operators

14/10/2015

Advert for Tele 2 RussiaDiscount mobile operator Tele2 will next week launch in Moscow in a bid to to break the near monopoly that Russia’s ‘big three’ telecoms companies – MTS, VimpelCom and MegaFon – currently enjoy in the capital. 
Originally a subsidiary of the multinational Swedish based telecoms company of the same name, the Russian arm was sold to a group of Russian shareholders consisting of VTB Bank, Rostelecom and Bank Rossiya in 2013.
Rostelecom subsequently merged its mobile assets with those of its new acquisition, VTB supplied a $260m credit line, and earlier this year City Hall signed up to an infrastructure development deal. Analysts suggest that the arrival of a new operator could see subscription prices in Moscow fall by as much as 30%.
Moscow is Russia’s biggest and most lucrative mobile market. The city’s 12 million people earn on average twice as much as the Russian average, and their combined spending on mobile services last year was more than $115m per month, according to data compiled by the city’s authorities.