Eurovision a winner for TeliaSonera

Eurovision a winner for TeliaSonera
Sweden’s domestic qualifying competition and the Eurovision song contest finals which follow are big cash cows for TeliaSonera, regardless of who wins.

Sweden’s entrant in the contest this year, Charlotte Perrelli, who won the contest in 1999, was the fan favourite in a pre-contest vote conducted by the BBC.

A second Eurovision win would secure Perrelli’s place in the record books as the first woman to win the contest twice.

But even if Perrelli doesn’t live up to expectations, TeliaSonera stands to benefit when Swedes pick up their phones to vote for their favorite songs in the music competition finals, which get underway Tuesday night in Belgrade, Serbia.

The company’s MegaCall telephone voting system has already earned the company 17 million kronor ($2.9 million) from voting during Sweden’s domestic qualifying rounds.

Income so far is nearly twice the amount taken in by Swedish public broadcasting charity Radiohjälpen, which also received a portion of the proceeds generated by viewers who cast their votes by telephone.

Still, the sum is just a drop in the bucket compared with what TeliaSonera earns from all the TV programs which use MegaCall.

According to the Dagens Nyheter newspaper, the telecom company earns between 350 and 400 million kronor per year from the telephone voting service.

Perrelli is scheduled to perform in the second Eurovision semifinal on Thursday night.

A new Eurovision champion will be crowned following Saturday night’s final competition.