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RoundUp: Rediff, TalktoHT, Yota For WiMAX, DoT On Spectrum, BSNL, MTNL, PVR Eyes DT Cinemas, Gitanjali Buys MobileNXT

Rediff Sues Latin American Co. For Cyber Squatting

redifflogoRediff.com has won a case against Panama-based Domain Management for running a website similar to its flagship webmail service Rediffmail.com. Domain Management bought Rediffmai.com in 2004 and was convicted of cyber squatting, using the website for commercial purposes and misleading Rediff users. Apparently, Rediff has had this trouble before, having fought 10 cases in total at World Intellectual Property Organization.(Rediff)

Hindustan Times Launches Feedback Portal; Industry Moves

talktoht_logoHindustan Times has launched talktoHT.com, a website that will garner feedback from readers, be a platform for discussions and interactivity between the media group and its customers. It has six moderators, 27 ideas and 46 comments so far. It is run by Lattice Purple.(Pluggd.in)

Amit Baruah To Head BBC Hindi

Amit Baruah, the foreign editor at HT (who officially blogged here) has quit to head BBC Hindi, while regional and cultural editor Renuka Narayanan (referred to as She Baba in her HT blog) is moving to Bangkok as Director of a new India Cultural Centre set up by the Ministry of External Affairs. (ContentSutra)

Russia’s Yota To Partner MTNL, BSNL For WiMAX

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yotaYota, a Russian telco, is in talks with the 2 PSUs for offering WiMAX in India. It runs a WiMAX network in 3 cities in Russia including Moscow and St. Petersburg. Both BSNL and MTNL already have WiMAX spectrum and BSNL has floated a tender inviting private players. (Business Line)

DoT On New Spectrum

New bands of spectrum, recently vacated by the Army, are now available to the Department of Telecom, which is seeking the telecon regulator TRAI’s view of how to allot them. The bands are 1785-1805 MHz, which can be used for mobile services and 2010-2025 MHz for mobile broadband under 3G. BSNL has applied for a 5 MHz slice of the second band.(Economic Times)

MobileNXT Acquired By Gitanjali For Rs. 2-5 crores

gitanjalilogoJewellery firm Gitanjali group has acquired 70% stake in handset retailer MobileNXT. It will be renamed as Hoop and will also sell merchandise targeting both men and women such as fashion jewellery, watches and eyewear at its stores. TV18 has invested in MobileNXT, whose website now redirects to group company In.com’s shopping portal. Losses were accruing at MobileNXT, with sales of handsets dropping. MobileNXT was set up in 2006, was making revenues of Rs. 30 crores and has 21 stores. With this acquisition, the customer base of MobileNXT is expected to widen up and Gitanjali plans to launch more stores.

Competitor The MobileStore by Essar Group is raising $75 million for its bullish expansion plans and was to launch its own brand of handsets. Another retailed Cellucom’s Indian retain chain was acquired by Spice Group in February. Chennai-based chain Univercell raised $21 million from venture capitalist Peepul Capital.

BSNL, MTNL’s Unrecovered Dues Worth Rs. 4000 Crores

High cost of collection of dues has led to BSNL and MTNL losing an estimated Rs. 3962 crores due to delinquency. For BSNL, the dues amount to Rs. 3092 crores while MTNL has yet to recover Rs. 870 crores, according to the Economic Times.

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pvr-dtPVR In Discussions To Buy DLF’s Screens

PVR is interested in acquiring DT Cinemas, a subsidiary of real estate major DLF Group. DT Cinemas owns and runs 26 screens with 3250 seats in Gurgaon, Delhi and Chandigarh and has plans to open 16 new screens with 2900 seats at Saket, Vasant Kunj, and Gurgaon. (Economic Times)

BSNL-NTT DoCoMo Partner

They have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to jointly offer enterprise solutions to corporate users. NTT DoCoMo is a Japanese telco that has partnered with Tata Indicom to offer its expertise in CDMA telephony.(The Hindu)

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