* Ericsson, NSN to supply LTE radio network to TeliaSonera
* Ericsson to supply core network
* Deal covers Norway and Sweden
* Huawei LTE gear to be replaced in Oslo in due course (Releads, adds details on Huawei’s defeat, updates shares)
By Tarmo Virki, European technology correspondent
HELSINKI, Jan 13 (Reuters) - Ericsson ERICb.ST and Nokia Siemens (NSN) won the key next-generation LTE network contract from Nordic operator TeliaSonera TLSN.ST on Wednesday, beating out Chinese rival Huawei.
Huawei [HWT.UL], known for its aggressive pricing, had been seen as the primary candidate to win part of the deal after TeliaSonera used it, together with Ericsson, in its original rollout in the capitals of Norway and Sweden.
The operator -- which last month was first to launch LTE services globally -- said Huawei would finish installing network in Norway’s capital Oslo, but the equipment would be replaced in due course.
Shares in Ericsson closed 2.3 percent higher at 70.25 crowns in Stockholm, while Nokia stock closed 0.4 percent higher at 9.045 euros in Helsinki.
The equipment vendors are battling for the first major orders for the next-generation LTE (Long Term Evolution) networks -- something they can use as a reference to win new orders.
Telecoms operators are expected to spend billions of euros on LTE networks as data traffic in their current networks has exploded due to the surge in take-up of mobile data cards.
Nokia's NOK1V.HE network gear arm, Nokia Siemens [NSN.UL], has seen its market share slide lately, and it fell behind Huawei in the third quarter of 2009, according to research firm Dell'Oro.
Analysts said the win marked the first major victory for Nokia Siemens’ more aggressive strategy under new chief executive Rajeev Suri.
“This win is an important milestone for NSN in delivering on its new strategy,” said Pal Zarandy from Rewheel consultancy. “It gives the message to the market that not only their portfolio matches the key technology selling points of the Chinese, but that NSN is also ready to match Huawei’s commercial flexibility.”
TeliaSonera said it made the decision on “commercial reasons” and that the vendors’ offerings were technically similar.
Ericsson is considered to be the leading player in LTE technology, but Alcatel-Lucent ALUA.PA, Huawei, Motorola MOT.N and Nokia Siemens have also won major LTE orders. (Additional reporting by Helena Soderpalm in Stockholm; Editing by Jon Loades-Carter and John Wallace)