Vietnam, Laos Launch Mobile Phone Network

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Oct. 22 – Vietnam’s Military Telecom Corporation (Viettel) has launched a mobile phone network in cooperation with its Laotian partner Lao-Asia Telecom.

The network is called Unitel and will be managed by Star Telecom Company, with  Viettel holding a 49 percent stake in the joint venture. Unitel aims to capture 25 percent market share in Laos by 2010 or about 1.5 million subscribers of Laos’  population of 6.2 million says VN Business News.

This is Viettel’s second foray into overseas mobile phone networks after it launched the Metfone network in Cambodia this year. The venture into Cambodia seems to be paying off as Metfone now ranks as the second top mobile network in the country out of eight mobile phone network providers.

Viettel is the first telecommunications company in the country to offer its services overseas. The company is already well-established in Vietnam, having the largest base of subscribers at 36 million. It now looking outward for opportunities with ambitions to be one of the world’s top 30 mobile phone networks by 2015.