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Next-Gen Service Provider: January 05, 2009 eNewsletter
January 05, 2009

Airtel Joins Hands with VIRTELA to Improve International MPLS Connectivity

By Raju Shanbhag, TMCnet Contributing Editor

Airtel has signed a strategic agreement with Virtela in a bid to improve its international managed MPLS (Multi Protocol Label Switching) connectivity outside of India. Multi Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) is a data-carrying mechanism that belongs to the family of packet-switched networks.

With the new agreement, Airtel (News - Alert) will now increase its international managed MPLS to more than 5,000 PoPs (Point of Presence) across 190 countries. Airtel was always looking to enhance its MPLS based IP-VPN (Internet Protocol Virtual Private Network) capabilities all across the globe. This partnership provides the company with the opportunity to do exactly the same as Bharti Airtel (News - Alert) and Virtela have integrated their networks through connection points in Southeast Asia and Europe.
“The need today is for world class telecom networks that can deliver a host of converged services through innovative and reliable communications technology. The partnership with Virtela is in line with our strategy to extend the global reach of our customers and to provide them with a secure, consistent and robust network running.” said David Nishball, President Enterprise Services, Bharti Airtel.
Virtela is not the only company that Airtel has entered into an agreement with for MPLS services. The company also has agreements with other players such as Singtel, and Telstra (News - Alert) to offer seamless SLAs, one simplified single currency invoice, under one contract.
Airtel claims the company is providing a world class domestic network for its customers. the company says that it has various PoPs (points of presence) 125 cities and 83,000 kilometres of optic fiber cable. According to the company, this is enough to cover major cities in India.
Recently, the company reshuffled its top management in India stating it needed to refocus on its strategies. The company said the new team will look for emerging business opportunities. The move is seen as an attempt to step up focus on leveraging the extensive distribution network to increase the range of offerings and is in talks with leading technology companies for distribution alliances.

Raju Shanbhag is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Raju's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Tim Gray


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