MVNO Europe

MVNO Europe

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1000 Brussels, Belgium
Phone: +32 2 789 66 23
Email: info@mvnoeurope.eu

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Welcome Italia becomes a member of MVNO Europe

Welcome Italia becomes a member of MVNO Europe

Posted by on Apr 2, 2019 in Uncategorized |

Brussels, 2 April 2019 – MVNO Europe welcomes the addition of Welcome Italia. Active on both the fixed and mobile markets, Welcome Italia positions itself as one of the best Italian telecommunications service providers for business customers.  

MVNO Europe is delighted to expand its membership with the addition of Welcome Italia – an operator focused on providing best-in-class services to business customers. Operating on the fixed market since 1999, Welcome Italia launched its mobile services in April 2018 under the name Vianova Mobile. With this move, Welcome Italia aims to integrate and maximize the potential of fixed-line and mobile networks, Wi-Fi, Private Branch Exchange and smartphones. As with many other MVNOs, Welcome Italia is designed to quickly and smoothly adapt to its clients’ ever-changing needs.

MVNO Europe looks forward to helping Welcome Italia further develop its MVNO activities. Together MVNO Europe and Welcome Italia will seek to progress towards fair and non-discriminatory network access conditions for MVNOs – regardless of the technology – in Italy and other EU countries. In parallel, with Welcome Italia among its members, MVNO Europe will keep fighting for the reduction of regulated wholesale roaming charges in the EU in order to enable MVNOs to increase competition on European markets and thereby benefit end-users.

Jacques Bonifay, chairman of MVNO Europe, warmly welcomed the new member “who will help the association to achieve a vibrantly competitive market, which remains the best tool to promote innovation, cross-border solutions and take-up of services by users.”.

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MVNO Europe welcomes sipgate Wireless as a new member

MVNO Europe welcomes sipgate Wireless as a new member

Posted by on Jan 15, 2019 in Uncategorized |

Brussels, 15 January 2019 – MVNO Europe keeps growing with the addition of sipgate Wireless. Together with its affiliate sipgate GmbH, sipgate Wireless offers integrated mobile and fixed solutions to businesses and consumers.

MVNO Europe is pleased to further expand by welcoming sipgate Wireless among its members. Based in Düsseldorf and active in Germany for more than nine years, sipgate Wireless operates as a full MVNO. Its very high-quality mobile solutions are marketed by its affiliate Sipgate GmbH to serve both businesses and consumers using the brands “sipgate team” and “simquadrat”. With better telephony as declared goal, sipgate Wireless distinguishes itself by offering transparent and personalized services to its customers.

With sipgate Wireless among its members, MVNO Europe will keep fighting to eliminate all the existing barriers that prevent MVNOs from competing and innovating on European markets. Above all, and especially in light of the emergence of 5G technologies, this implies securing fair and non-discriminatory network access conditions for MVNOs in all European countries. In parallel, in order to fulfil the needs of telecommunications customers, MVNO Europe and sipgate Wireless will work together on reducing EU wholesale roaming caps as well as on finding common grounds with some handset manufacturers on technical issues.

Jacques Bonifay, chairman of MVNO Europe, said that “with 5G auction procedures approaching in several European countries, if we are to secure a regulatory landscape allowing for competition, innovation and benefiting all end-users, it is of utmost importance to guarantee that MVNOs have fair network access”.

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Freenet Group joins MVNO Europe

Freenet Group joins MVNO Europe

Posted by on Jan 7, 2019 in Uncategorized |

Brussels, 07 January – MVNO Europe starts the new year with the addition of freenet Group. As the mother company of three MVNOs in Germany – namely mobilcom-debitel, callmobile and klarmobil – representing 12 million subscribers, the freenet Group offers a wide array of services on mobile and TV markets.

MVNO Europe is delighted to welcome its first German member. The freenet Group, operating online, via 570 own shops and several thousand distribution outlets throughout Germany, offers high-quality post-paid contracts and pre-paid offers for mobile communications. The freenet Group also provides state-of-the-art digital IPTV entertainment and terrestrial TV services. In parallel, the freenet Group develops innovative digital applications that relate to home automation and security, energy, data security, and infotainment.

In view of the wholesale agreements the freenet Group has with the three German MNOs, its well-established presence on the German market (i.e. around 12 million mobile subscribers) as well as the regular exchanges it has with the authorities like Bundesnetzagentur and Bundeskartellamt, MVNO Europe believes that the new member will help the association make progress towards fair and non-discriminatory network access conditions – regardless the technology – in Germany. The new member will also bolster MVNO Europe’s efforts to make wholesale roaming prices reduced in a way that truly benefits consumers and businesses within the EU.

Jacques Bonifay, chairman of MVNO Europe, expressed his satisfaction “to have a member with prominent presence in the biggest European country and that will allow MVNO Europe to make its voice heard more legitimately on  crucial innovation and competition issues”.

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MVNO Europe invites the European Commission to take utmost account of the ITRE Committee’s in-depth study on the impact of the Roaming-Like-At-Home regime

MVNO Europe invites the European Commission to take utmost account of the ITRE Committee’s in-depth study on the impact of the Roaming-Like-At-Home regime

Posted by on Nov 30, 2018 in Uncategorized |

Brussels, November 2018 – MVNO EUROPE welcomes the European Parliament‘s assessment work on the impact of Roaming-Like-At-Home (RLAH) and calls on the European Commission to carefully examine the ITRE Committee in-depth study to swiftly reduce wholesale roaming regulated tariffs.

Last week, at the hearing organized by the European Parliament’s Industry Committee (ITRE), Michael Krammer, CEO of Ventocom (member of MVNO Europe), explained to Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and to the European Commission to what extent Mobile Virtual Network Operators’ business has been affected by the special wholesale regime accompanying the end of retail roaming surcharges within the EU/EEA. While praising the advantages gained by consumers, Michael Krammer underlined the huge cost incurred by MVNOs as a result of the explosion of roaming traffic (+100%), in particular data usage. Given that MVNOs do not own their own network, as opposed to MNOs, MVNOs cannot offset those costs by trading wholesale roaming to other operators (while MNOs are able to do it). In parallel, MVNOs do not have the same ability to negotiate competitive wholesale prices as MNOs do. This problem is worsened by the fact that regulated wholesale caps remain substantially above retail prices. As a result, in Austria, but also in many other European countries, MVNOs are forced to sell roaming to their customers at a loss and to pay wholesale roaming prices that are 50% higher than those MNOs pay to each other. The resulting effect is that MVNOs are at a disadvantage, which undermines their ability to fully play their role in boosting competition on telecom markets as they always did.

MVNO Europe is glad to observe that the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC), the European Consumer Organisation (BEUC), and several MEPs are aware and recognize the need for the European institutions to deal with this abnormal situation on wholesale markets in order to make the Roaming-Like-At-Home regime a success in the long term for both operators and end-users (consumers and business users). The Chair of the hearing, MEP Paul Rübig (EPP, Austria) even declared that “the next European Digital Commissioner will have to demonstrate that roaming matters will remain central during his/her term”.

Both the positive and side effects produced by one year of implementation of the RLAH regime have been further assessed by the European Parliament Research Services (EPRS) in the recently in-depth study titled “Roaming: One Year After Implementation”. The study finds that wholesale roaming caps are at least 10x higher than the real cost of providing wholesale roaming services. In order to “fix” wholesale markets’ roaming problems, the report recommends “lowering of the wholesale cap for international mobile”, “enabling permanent roaming at a wholesale level for IoT application providers” and “sharing future 5G networks with open access to all service providers including MVNOs”. MVNO Europe believes that, if it is to achieve a European Digital Single Market, the European Commission has to seriously take into account these conclusions when it will conduct a review of the wholesale roaming market in 2019.

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MVNO Europe encourages the German Telecoms Regulator to impose MVNO access to 5G networks to ensure a fair and non-discriminatory telecoms market in Germany

MVNO Europe encourages the German Telecoms Regulator to impose MVNO access to 5G networks to ensure a fair and non-discriminatory telecoms market in Germany

Posted by on Nov 23, 2018 in Uncategorized |

Brussels, 22 November 2018 – Following the publication of the draft ‘5G’ spectrum auction terms by the German Federal Network Agency (‘the BNetzA’), MVNO Europe calls on the German regulator to impose wholesale network access requirements on radio spectrum licensees. In addition, we ask the BNetzA to further detail the internal-external non-discrimination principle it puts forward, and to ensure that it unambiguously has full power to intervene, notably in cases of clear discrimination between mobile networks’ own businesses and other services providers.

While regretting the lacking provisions making third service providers’ – and more particularly Mobile Virtual Network Operators (hereafter ‘MVNOs’) – access to future 2 GHz and 3,6 GHz networks mandatory, MVNO Europe welcomes the progress made by the BNetzA on the obligations for Mobile Network Operators (hereafter ‘MNOs’) to cooperate in the development of a modern infrastructure. More specifically, MVNO Europe lauds the new negotiation requirements MNOs will have to comply with when it comes to service provider access, national roaming and infrastructure sharing. Similarly, MVNO Europe welcomes the BNetzA’s ability to arbitrate disputes and – where necessary – impose fines on operators infringing the non-discrimination principle.

The obligation for MNOs to cooperate in the expansion of 5G networks in Germany and BNetzA’s new capabilities can contribute to ensuring that German mobile operators do not obstruct competition and innovation. Obstruction to economic developments will be avoided only if the concept of internal-external non-discrimination is further clarified in the licence terms (e.g. by including the definition of the Advisory Council in Recital 499) and if BNetzA’s related fines and sanctions are readily applied. It is imperative that BNetzA unambiguously has full power to intervene on both technical and commercial aspects of wholesale network access.

Until now, the three incumbent German MNOs have made clear they have no intention of enabling non-discriminatory wholesale access to their networks, or to support industrial and Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystems. Many MVNOs, as well as industrial companies, willing to develop 5G networks and services, see their commercial and innovation potential curtailed, due to that fact that fit-for-purpose wholesale access to 4G is hampered by these MNOs. MVNO Europe believes that behaviour is detrimental not only to consumers’ interests but also to businesses of all sizes. Therefore, MVNO Europe hopes to mitigate the replication of such a situation with the development of 5G.

Jacques Bonifay, Chairman of MVNO Europe underlined that “fair and non-discriminatory access to 5G technologies for small operators and MVNOs is the only way to further advance German industrial and consumer interests. This is essential for boosting innovation and competition on both telecom consumer and business markets”.

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