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    Olympic challenge


    Greek operator Cosmote is gearing up for a major promotional campaign when the Olympic Games come to the country next year.

    As it prepares for a mass influx of visitors during the 15 days of the games, the operator has signed 280 roaming agreements in 130 countries and hopes to have GPRS roaming available later this year. 3G services are planned for 2004 in time for the event.
    As an official sponsor of the games, the operator is hoping to cash in both on roamers and on increasing the number of subscribers in Greece.
    “The Olympic brand is the best known brand in the world,” said Katerina Koutsaftike, Cosmote’s products expert. “We want to participate actively in all the Olympic activities, including things that have already started.”
    These include a roadshow touring Greece at the moment with a booth that lets people send SMS messages to the athletes and a contest with top prizes of trips to the games including tickets, travel and accommodation. The operator is also doing co-promotions with handset maker Samsung.
    “Though we are doing specific services for the event,” said Koutsaftike, “we are concentrating on reusable services. We are putting a lot of effort and we don’t want this just operating for 15 days.”