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Eurobites: Opera Gets Call From Microsoft

Paul Rainford

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Nokia lands Irish RAN contract; Rocket fires up IPO; Mail.ru feels the heat in Russia.

  • Norway-based Opera Software ASA has signed a licensing agreement with Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) under the terms of which Opera mini will become the default web browser for Microsoft's range of feature phones. People who use the current browser for these phones, Xpress, will be encouraged to upgrade to Opera Mini, while new devices will have Opera Mini pre-installed.

  • Following its recent acquisition of O2 in Ireland, 3 Ireland has chosen Nokia Networks to upgrade its 2G and 3G networks as part of a €300 million (US$398 million) network investment plan. The Finnish vendor will provide its Single RAN platform based on its Flexi Multiradio 10 basestation, and will modernize the core network with its Liquid Core-based Open Mobile Softswitch (MSS) and Open Media Gateway (MGW). (See NSN Hangs Its Future on the Liquid Net.)

  • German venture capital firm Rocket Internet is to launch an IPO in the first half of September, according to a Reuters report. Rocket is hoping to raise €800 million ($398 million), sources said.

  • Further evidence of the effect of Russia's current political instability on the country's communications industries comes from Mail.ru, the operator of social networks and online games, reports Bloomberg. The company has reduced its full-year sales growth forecast from 22-24% to 14-18%, as display advertising revenue continues to plummet.

    Monday is a public holiday in the UK, so Eurobites returns, suitably refreshed, on Tuesday. Stay tuned.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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