MTNL, that operates in Mumbai and Delhi only, has 1400 towers as compared to BSNL's 40,000 who is planning on sharing its towers with private firms. MTNL plans to add another 700 towers in FY 2011-12. Recently, MTNL had invited EoI (Expression of Interest) for sharing the use of BTS (Base Tranciever Stations) in Delhi and plans to do the same for Mumbai.
The company, that has most of its BTS at its exchange sites, had earlier shared some of the infrastructure with private sector firms as part of an experiment following the success of which, the decision to lease out its towers has been taken.
Our take: This is an excellent step in the direction of turning around of the company.
Over the years, the company has taken certain excellent decisions on handling of union and making the pay in line with the contribution to grow its business. The company's task is now to provide the improved user experience.
With the initiation of sharing its infrastructure the company will find a new set of clients.