New MVNO services will launch throughout Latin America via a partnership between MVNO specialist Tribe Mobile and Virgin Group, which operates a mobile virtual network in the UK. Across the next five years, the firms have pledged a combined investment of US$300 million, and are aiming to begin their rollout within the next 12 to 15 months.
Latin America is seen as something of an untapped market for MVNOs, as there are fewer than 10 currently operating in the region despite its massive population of over 550 million. Two institutional investors – US group ePlanet Ventures and Oman’s Dolphin International – have pledged their support to the joint venture.
The head of Virgin, Sir Richard Branson, commented: “Latin America’s mobile telecom consumers will benefit from Virgin’s entry into their markets to provide our exciting customer focused product offering, wide range of great services, transparent pricing and value for money.”
The new joint venture into Latin America will be headed up by the founder of Tribe Mobile, Phil Wallace, who commented: “More than in any other region, wireless has replaced fixed line service for consumer use and the region is ripe for new options that can either attract new customers or focus on special consumer segments.”