[Wikimedia-l] [Wikimedia Announcements] [Press Release] Axiata partners with the Wikimedia Foundation to offer free mobile Wikipedia access through Wikipedia Zero

Jay Walsh jwalsh at wikimedia.org
Tue Mar 19 03:04:23 UTC 2013

(This release can also be found online at

''Axiata partners with the Wikimedia Foundation to offer free mobile
Wikipedia access through Wikipedia Zero''

San Francisco, California and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia -- March 18, 2013
-- Axiata Group Berhad and the Wikimedia Foundation today announced a
partnership to offer Wikipedia on mobile devices free of data charges
to Axiata customers throughout Asia. By making Wikipedia available at
no data charge to its customers, Axiata is removing barriers to
information while joining the Wikimedia Foundation to increase access
to the free and open knowledge available on Wikipedia.

This partnership is part of the Wikimedia Foundation's Wikipedia Zero
program, which focuses on reaching the billions of people around the
world whose primary opportunity to access the internet is via a mobile
device. The partnership currently includes customers of Axiata
subsidiaries in Sri Lanka (Dialog Axiata), Cambodia (Smart Axiata),
Malaysia (Celcom Axiata), Indonesia (XL Axiata), and Bangladesh (Robi

“We applaud Axiata for joining us in removing a major barrier to
accessing Wikipedia on mobile phones. This partnership is an important
step forward in our mission to enable everyone on the planet to access
free knowledge,” said Kul Takanao Wadhwa, Head of Mobile with the
Wikimedia Foundation. “With Axiata, one of the largest Asian
telecommunication providers, we’re now able to expand free access to
Wikipedia in more countries. With this partnership, Wikipedia Zero is
now available to 410 million mobile users around the world.”

Mohd Khairil Abdullah, Group Chief Marketing and Operations Officer of
Axiata said, “We are excited about this partnership with the Wikimedia
Foundation. Axiata’s extensive coverage across the region makes this
partnership one of the largest provisions of free mobile access to
Wikipedia to date. We hope that by offering this service for free we
will be enriching the lives of our customers, especially ones with
little or no fixed internet access.”

This partnership is part of Axiata’s broad vision of advancing Asia
through affordable connectivity and innovative technology. Education
is a pillar for Axiata’s business operations and social development
commitment. Through the years, Axiata has established local education
programmes in all its operating countries to help development in rural

Customers in each territory will be able to access local language
versions of Wikipedia along with the English version.

The program will be rolled out to Axiata’s operations throughout 2013.

Questions and answers about the partnership and Wikipedia Zero can be found at:

About Axiata
Axiata is one of the largest Asian telecommunication companies. Axiata
has controlling interests in mobile operators in Malaysia, Indonesia,
Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Cambodia with significant strategic stakes
in India and Singapore. India represents one of the fastest growing
markets in the world. In addition, the Malaysian-grown holding company
has a stake in mobile telecommunication operations in Thailand.

The Group’s mobile subsidiaries and associates operate under the brand
name ‘Celcom’ in Malaysia, ‘XL’ in Indonesia, ‘Dialog’ in Sri Lanka,
‘Robi’ in Bangladesh, ‘Smart’ in Cambodia, ‘Idea’ in India and ‘M1’ in

The Group, including its subsidiaries and associates, has over 215
million mobile subscribers in Asia. The Group revenue for 2012 was
USD5.7 billion. The Group provides employment to over 20,000 people
across Asia. Axiata’s vision is to be a regional champion by 2015 by
piecing together the best throughout the region in connectivity,
technology and talent, uniting them towards a single goal: Advancing

Axiata was awarded the Frost & Sullivan 2009, 2010,  2011 and 2012
Asia Pacific ICT Award for Best Telecom Group and the Telecom Asia
Best Regional Mobile Group 2010 and 2011 for its operations in
multiple Asian markets.

Axiata Press Contact:
media at axiata.com

About Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is the non-profit organization that operates
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. According to comScore Media Metrix,
Wikipedia and the other projects operated by the Wikimedia Foundation
receive more than 488 million unique visitors per month, making them
the fifth-most popular web property worldwide (comScore, January
2013). Available in 285 languages, Wikipedia contains more than 25
million articles contributed by a global volunteer community of
roughly 80,000 people. Based in San Francisco, California, the
Wikimedia Foundation is an audited, 501(c)(3) charity that is funded
primarily through donations and grants.

Wikimedia Foundation Press Contact:

Jay Walsh
Senior Director, Communications
Wikimedia Foundation
+1 415-839-6885 x 6609
jwalsh at wikimedia.org

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