MVNO Monday: a guide to the week’s virtual operator developments

22 Jun 2020

US-backed, Latin American-based supermarket chain Walmart de Mexico y Centroamerica has launched a new pre-paid MVNO in Mexico under the Bodega Aurrera Internet y Telefonia (BAIT) brand. The new service offers unlimited internet access for MXN50 (USD2.22) per week or MXN200 per month. In addition, anyone who buys a MXN20 SIM card during June or July will receive 30 days of free access. Beatriz Nunez, VP of Growth at Walmart de Mexico y Centroamerica, commented: ‘Given the current situation, and the “new normal” that we are experiencing, being connected is essential, and doing it at the lowest prices allows us to fulfil our vision of [helping] Mexican families to live better.’ The new MVNO is the latest in an increasingly long line of companies to use the open access Red Compartida wholesale network.

Grupo MASMOVIL has confirmed that it completed the acquisition of Lycamobile Spain from UK-based Lycamobile Group on 12 June, following the receipt of approval from the relevant antitrust authorities. The final price was EUR361 million (USD405.3 million), down slightly from an initial estimate of EUR372 million and will be paid in two instalments. As part of the transaction, MASMOVIL has also assumed EUR3 million in debt. The transaction has been funded by bank debt that has been committed by ‘two leading international financial institutions’ while BNP Paribas acted as financial advisor for the transaction.

Telekom Srbija, is progressing with its previously stated plans to introduce MVNOs targeting the Serbian diaspora in various markets, the company’s head of internet and multimedia, Vladimir Lucic, has revealed. The company already offers MVNO services via m:tel Austria, and expects to introduce virtual services in Germany and Switzerland before end-2020, with launches in the US and Canada following at a future date.

Finally, UK-based communications and utility services provider Telecom Plus, which trades under the Utility Warehouse banner, has published its financial results for the year ended 31 March 2020 (FY20), reporting the number of MVNO accesses on its books increased to 280,220 from 252,206 year-on-year. Revenues from its MVNO services totalled GBP37.4 million (USD46.7 million), up from GBP32.5 million in FY19. The MVNO currently operates over the EE network.

We welcome your feedback about MVNO Monday. If you have any questions, topic suggestions, or corrections, please email editors@commsupdate.com

TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database is now home to the telecoms industry’s fastest-growing collection of MVNO data, covering more than 90 countries and 1,000 virtual operators. If you would like to find out more, please email sales@telegeography.com