PRISTINA,Kosovo — A consortium headed by a Kosovo businessman was declared the winner of a bid for the second mobile operator in the U.N.-run province, officials said Tuesday.
Kosmocell, a partnership between local companies Dukagjini, Kujtesa and an Italian-US operator, emerged first, beating a consortium between Telekom Slovenija and the Kosovo provider Ipko Net, Mobilkom Austria, as well as Team Kosova, said Mirlinda Bivolaku, a spokeswoman for the board of Telecommunications Regulatory Authority.
Kosmocell offered euro81 million (about US$104.8 million) for the license, she said.
The province already has one cell phone operator under a deal between the Kosovo Post Telecom and Monaco Telecom.
Kosovo has been run as a U.N. protectorate since mid-1999 when the war ended here.
The process to select the second operator in Kosovo was marred with irregularities. In 2004, the bid was canceled by U.N. authorities after the procedure was contested by Kosovo's prime minister and U.S. diplomats, who raised concerns about possible corruption and misconduct in the bidding process. © 2007 The Associated Press. Fair use.