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Mobile TeleSystems acquires 100% stake in each of the four companies operating under the Altair brand

Mobile TeleSystems OJSC (MTS), the leading telecommunications provider in Russia and the CIS, announced that the MTS Group acquired a 100% stake in each of the four companies operating under the Altair brand (Altair).

Altair is the largest cable TV provider and leading broadband provider in Tula, the administrative center of the Tula region of the Central Federal District, from a group of private investors.

The acquisition will enable MTS to become the leading provider of broadband internet and cable television services in Tula and will strengthen Company’s fixed-line business in the Central Federal District.

The purchase price was RUB 680 million (or approximately $23.2 million). The price includes assumption of Altair’s net debt.

Altair is the largest cable TV provider in Tula with the market share of 72% and one of the leading fixed broadband providers with the market share of 22%. Its fiber optic network covers more than 90% of the city’s households.

Commenting on the acquisition, Mr. Dmitriy Rylov, Director of “MTS Center,” said the acquisition of Altair allows MTS not only to enter into a new fixed-line market but also to increase its overall presence in the Central region.

“MTS sees this as a promising market and are committed to strengthening its leadership position through further development and modernization of the networks and offering its customers world-class services. The transaction is in line with MTS’ strategy aimed at building an integrated telecommunications operator,” commented Mr. Rylov.

Today, the MTS Group provides fixed-line services in over 120 cities in Russia. Altair’s financial results will be consolidated in MTS’ financial statements beginning from August 22, 2011.

Mobile TeleSystems OJSC is the leading telecommunications group in Russia, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, offering mobile and fixed voice, broadband, pay TV as well as content and entertainment services in one of the world's fastest growing regions.

Including its subsidiaries, the Group services over 108.8 million mobile subscribers in Russia, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Armenia and Belarus, a region that boasts a total population of more than 230 million. Since June 2000, MTS' Level 3 ADRs have been listed on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol MBT).

The Group’s fixed business, as of December 31, 2010, had a total of 9.9 million households passed, 1.8 million broadband Internet and 2.6 million pay-TV subscribers.

27th August 2011

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