Former MVNO develops MVNE hub in Asia

Melissa Chua
28 Mar 2011
Daily News

Former Malaysian MVNO Baraka Telecom has changed focus to being an mobile virtual network enabler (MVNE) for operators in Asia.

The company plans to invest 50 million ringgit ($16.52 million) to set up an MVNE hub in Kuala Lumpur. The investment budget comes from Kuwait-based parent Reach Telecom.

The MVNE hub will support MVNOs’ back-end infrastructure and operations needs in a bid to enable them concentrate on serving their target customer segments more efficiently.

The hub is designed to support MVNOs in multiple countries, Baraka Telecom general manager Mukesh Baskaran said. MVNOs will pay an initial set-up fee and monthly managed service fee for services.

“We have a commercial model that is easy for MVNOs to subscribe to. No huge investment is required by the MVNO and they only pay for services required based on their subscriber base. We also provide revenue sharing options instead of a fee-based subscription,” Baskaran said.

Baraka has signed up an MVNO in Malaysia that will launch in the next two to three weeks. The company is in discussions with four more potential Asian MVNOs and hopes to host four to five more by year-end. Baraka has invested 35 million ringgit and plans to use the remainder over the next 18 months to support further growth.

A number of MVNEs offer services in Asia on a country or carrier-specific basis. M2 Telecom is the official MVNE of Australia's Optus while Effortel provides a similar service for Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom.

Baskaran said the company will also offer research and consultancy for potential MVNOs.

The company acquired network switch gateways, data core networks, prepaid billing systems, content management systems and business support systems. Vendor partners include Ericsson, Tata Consultancy Services, Opencode, Oracle and G&D.

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