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Thursday July 21, 2011

YTL Comms set to make forays into Sabah, Sarawak

PETALING JAYA: YTL Communications Sdn Bhd (YTL Comms) will put together a business plan to secure licences to roll out its 4G mobile Internet-with-voice service, Yes in Sabah and Sarawak.

Chief executive officer Wing K. Lee said it had received acknowledgement from the Government for the required licence to start operation in the two states and had been requested to submit its business plan.

“It is a multi-step process. We will put together our business plan for the licence. Hopefully we can introduce our service in Sabah and Sarawak,” he told StarBiz.

Lee clarified that although it had received acknowledgment from the Government it had not been assigned any apparatus assignment.

Wing: ‘It’s a multi-step process.’

According to Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), apparatus assignment is the right to use or operate telecommunications apparatus in a specific frequency.

YTL Comms, which launched its Yes service last November has close to 300,000 subscribers to date and has introduced various services to the market.

Lee said on top of Sabah and Sarawak, YTL Comm was also expanding its footprint to Johor this week and was on track to introduce its Android-based applications.

“By year-end all 2,500 base stations should be deployed. We started with 1,200 base stations when we introduced our service in November. Today, we have some 2,000 base stations covering the whole Peninsular Malaysia,” he said, adding that it had all its base stations in Johor deployed.

Lee said YTL Comms was all set to launch it services in the southern state and had also engaged agents to enable consumers to sign up for their services.

YTL Comms will have 100 agents and partners (including in Malacca) by this weekend launch and 300 by end-2011.

Lee said YTL Comms had allocated RM3.3bil for the deployment of its base stations and had so far spent more than US$200mil.

Subsequently, it will introduce its services to the east coast Kota Baru, Kuantan and Terengganu. “They will skipped 3G and go to 4G when we launch our service there,” Lee said.

On the 2.6G spectrum, Lee said YTL Comms had resubmitted its business plan to the MCMC to secure a block of the 2.6G long-term evolution (LTE) spectrum or 4G spectrum as instructed earlier.

Last month, the regulator had met up with telecommunication companies on a one-on-one basis and that the companies were told to revise their plans and submit them.

The nine telcos that are slated to get a 20Mhz block of the 2.6G spectrum are the four 3G players (Celcom Axiata Bhd, DiGi.Com Bhd, Maxis Bhd, U Mobile Sdn Bhd) and the five WiMAX players (Asiaspace Sdn Bhd, Packet One Network (M) Sdn Bhd, REDtone Int Bhd, YTL Communications and Puncak Semangat Sdn Bhd).

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