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Russian Cellphone Penetration Rate Reaches 164 Percent


Russian cellphone penetration rate reached 164 percent and continues growing

MOSCOW, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Russian mobile phone subscriptions
stood at 234 million by the end of June, equal to 164 percent of
the population, up from 230.4 million three months earlier, data
from market research group AC&M showed on Thursday.
The total number of valid SIM cards was up 6.6 million from 
the same period a year ago. The number exceeds 100 percent
because many people own several SIM cards. Russia's population
reached 143 million in 2012, according to the Federal Statistics

Megafon , Russia's second-biggest mobile
phone operator by subscribers, said on Thursday it was buying
next-generation service provider Scartel for $1.2 billion to
extend its lead in the race to provide high-speed internet.
AC&M provided the following data (millions of subscribers, 
including those in Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, 
Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan): 
                                      June 30    March 31  
  Mobile TeleSystems (MTS)     102.77      101.84     
   of which in Russia                71.69       71.33 

  Vimpelcom*                       106.93      107.15    
   of which in Russia                57.10       55.67    

  Megafon                            66.04       64.85       
   of which in Russia               64.07       62.67     

  Tele2 Russia**                    23.24       22.88    
  Rostelecom **                    13.77       13.60    
  Cellular Communications MOTIV* 2.38        2.36
  SMARTS Group**                 1.83        1.86  
 * = Vimpelcom's headline subscriber numbers are for Russia and 
the CIS block of former Soviet republics only.     
 ** = All subscribers are in Russia.      
 Russian market share breakdown by percentage as of June 30:  
                    MTS      Megafon   Vimpelcom    Others   
  Russia            31.0      27.0        24.0        18.0
  Moscow            37.0      27.0        35.0         0.6
  St Petersburg     28.0      33.0        21.0        18.5
  Regions           30.0      27.0        22.0        21.0