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Satyam Info calls off JV with RPG

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CIOL Bureau
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CHENNAI: India's largest private Internet firm Satyam Infoway Ltd has called

off a planned broadband Internet access joint venture project with

Calcutta-based RPG Netcom Ltd., the firm's chief said on Saturday.

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"The cable-based (Internet access) initiative has not found acceptance

among retail customers and so we decided that the timing is not right for now

and that we would revisit it later," Satyam Infoway's managing director R

Ramaraj told Reuters.

Satyam tied up with the RPG Group firm in December 1999, to set up an equal

joint venture for providing cable-based broadband Internet access in Calcutta,

where RPG Netcom operates an extensive cable television network.

The Hindu Business Line on Saturday quoted RPG Group vice-chairman

Sanjiv Goenka as saying the joint venture had been called off and that the group

was now "taking a re-look at its entire strategy of acting as an ISP".

Ramaraj said several cable-based broadband access projects launched by a clutch

of Internet service providers in the country, including the firm's other cable

project in Jamshedpur, were struggling to woo retail customers.

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"That project goes on, but there also the response from retail Internet

users has been very small," he added. A majority of India's over two

million Internet subscribers currently access the Internet using dial-up

connections.

(C) Reuters Limited 2001.

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