China Mobile, Suning announce MVNO deal

China Mobile, Suning announce MVNO deal

Fiona Chau
telecomasia.net
China Mobile and Suning Appliance, the country’s largest home appliance retailer, have reached an agreement which will see the latter resell the operator’s mobile service as a MVNO.
 
In a statement released last Friday, China Mobile said the two have submitted applications to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) for the MVNO trial. Upon receiving approval from the regulator, Suning will repackage and resell China Mobile’s mobile services including voice, SMS and data business under its own brand.
 
The deal is the first official MVNO partnership China Mobile has ever announced. Earlier China Mobile chief executive Li Yue said the company has signed framework agreements with 17 companies to operate mobile services as MVNOs.
 
As part of the government's efforts to open the nation's telecom industry up to private sector participation, the MIIT last year issued an edict requiring the nation's three mobile operators to partner with at least two private MVNO brands.
 
The MIIT has so far granted MVNO licenses to 19 companies, including GOME and JD.Com. Some of these have launched services this month while others are expected to start selling their services in May.
 
Apart from the MVNO partnership, China Mobile and Suning will also collaborate on handsets sales and mobile internet services, as part of the strategic cooperation agreement the two firms announced last Friday.
 
On the handsets side, Suning will set up 4G experience areas in its retail shops across the country for China Mobile customers and leverage its advantages of to promote 3G and TD-LTE handsets.  China Mobile will set up its flagship shops on Suning’s  B2B online portal, Suning.com, to provide voice top-up service for its subscribers.
 
Additionally, the two will also cooperating on promoting a range of mobile internet services and applications including China Mobile’s NFC-based mobile wallet service, e-commerce, video service and location based application.
 
China Mobile will also become one of the major communication service providers for Suning, offering various mobile and messaging services tailored for the latter’s requirements.