Eurobites: US lawsuit alleges corruption at Iraq's Korek Telecom

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Hyperoptic extends Thurrock network; Synamedia appoints new CFO; streaming VoD turns into a torrent.

  • There's telecom trouble a-plenty brewing in Iraq. As the Financial Times reports (subscription required), a lawsuit filed in the US alleges that a group of investors in Korek Telecom Ltd. , the country's third-largest telco, attempted to "improperly influence" Iraq's telecom regulator to act in its favor by, among other things, buying the head of the regulator a house in London worth £830,000. Two rival operators in Iraq, Orange (NYSE: FTE) and Agility, claim that the regulator had acted to stop them from taking control of Korek, and the aggrieved pair have now started proceedings to obtain financial records from Korek's banks to uncover more evidence of what they claim is "self-dealing, material misappropriation and mismanagement" by the group of Korek investors.

  • More than 1,400 public housing tenants in Thurrock, a borough on the eastern fringes of London, are to gain access to gigabit broadband courtesy of UK altnet Hyperoptic , which has just announced that it is extending its existing agreement with the local authority and taking its fiber network to a further 20 public housing developments in the borough. The first phase of the project, which was announced last year and covered 12 housing development, is almost complete, according to Hyperoptic.

  • UK-based video technology vendor Synamedia , recently created by Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO)'s sale of its video software business to Permira Funds, has hired Rick Medlock as its CFO. Medlock has history with the video newbie, as he was formerly the CFO at NDS, which became part of Cisco's video business and which is now the rump of Synamedia. Medlock's most recent role has been as CFO at Worldpay, the payments firm that was also home to BT's incoming CEO. (See Cisco Closes Sale of Video Software Unit to Permira, Bye Bye Cisco Video Software, Hello Synamedia and Eurobites: Worldpay's Jansen Lands BT Top Job.)

    Home in on the opportunities and challenges facing European cable operators. Join Light Reading for the Cable Next-Gen Europe event in London on November 6. And it's free for everyone!

  • Streaming video on demand, or SVoD, is on the march in Europe, according to new study from Digital TV Research . According to the study, by the end of 2018 European SVoD subscriptions will have tripled over three years to 76 million, while "traditional" pay-TV will have only added 8 million subscribers, to reach 186 million. SVoD's percentage share of overall revenue is predicted to double over the period, to 28%.

  • Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK)'s AVA analytics offering has found a berth on Hutchison 3 Indonesia's LTE network, where, Nokia claims, it has increased spectral efficiency by 17%. AVA analyzes data from Nokia and other vendors' networks, tapping into billions of anonymized measurement reports sent by ordinary mobile phones.

  • UK IoT network operator WNDUK is in celebratory mood, trumpeting that it has, in partnership with France's Sigfox , installed 1,000 basestations, connecting more than three quarters of the UK population to its low-power wide-area network. WNDUK is Sigfox's sole network operator in the UK. (See French Toast? Sigfox on Skid Row.)

  • Following approval from the Swedish authorities last week, Tele2 AB (Nasdaq: TLTO) and Com Hem AB have today completed their $3.3 billion merger, with Anders Nilsson taking the reins as president and CEO immediately. (See Sweden's Tele2 to Swallow Com Hem in $3.3B Deal.)

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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