chello broadband Moves into Central Europe

[London, ENGLAND] European high-speed Internet provider
chello broadband nv announced Monday its expansion into
Central Europe in a partnership with Hungarian broadband
company UPC Magyarország.

Both chello broadband and UPC Magyarország are
subsidiaries of United Pan-Europe Communications.
UPC Magyarország provides cable television
services to 35 towns in Hungary.

Roger Lynch, president and CEO of chello broadband,
said he expects the growth in Internet usage to
be especially strong in Hungary, the first country
in Central Europe to get chello’s broadband service.

“The number of Internet accounts in Hungary is expected
to grow over 500 percent from now until 2004, when 6
percent of the country’s population will be users,”
said Lynch.

Services from chello include not only access to the
rest of the Internet, but also national and localized
content specially prepared for broadband. Among the
content suppliers are Amtel, Port, Magazix, Netforum,
Globopolis, Est FM, Netrider, Warner Music, Sport 1,
Universal Music and Sony.

Uli Neuert, director, chello broadband Central-Europe,
said that initially his company would be launching
chello in four districts of Budapest and in Miskolc.
It expects to reach 0.4 million homes with two-way
capacity by the end of 2001.

Joe Zuravle, managing director of UPC Magyarország,
said the Hungarian company had already been operating
an experimental broadband Internet service in several
regions of the country.

“With the addition of chello’s international, national
and localized broadband content, this new partnership
gives our customers an even larger choice,” said
Zuravle.

In July 2000, UPC and its parent UnitedGlobalCom
merged their chello subsidiary with [email protected]’s
international operations, forming Excite Chello —
a deal that has yet to close, pending regulatory approval
and other factors such as financing.

News Around the Web