BSNL Plans BOOT Model For Developing Rural Wireless Networks

The Hindu Business Line: In a first of its kind project, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd has invited bids from private players to roll out wireless rural telecom network on a Build, Own, Operate and Transfer (BOOT) model. The successful bidder will function as a BSNL franchisee on a revenue share basis. The public sector telco has, however, ruled out partnering any company that has a licence to offer telecom services.
Initially, the project will be implemented in Tamil Nadu Circle and depending on its success, BSNL may consider implementing the new model in other parts of the country. This is the first time any telecom operator has considered the BOOT model, which is quite common in other infrastructure projects such as roads and ports.
The franchisee company will bring the technology, provide the capital expenditure for the equipment, install and commission them and provide direct support for operations, maintenance and customer care. The franchisee would also assume the role of content aggregator and arrange for the content for the set of broadcast TV signals and Video on Demand. BSNL will be to provide the necessary wireless spectrum, co-location space for the equipment, power and air conditioning, bandwidth and bill collection.