Europe - the success of the no-frills mobile model

Telecom Investment research Note


No-frills Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) have become a permanent feature of Europe’s mobile industry. MVNOs buy network capacity from network operators (MNOs) and then offer their own branded mobile subscriptions and value-added services. A niche market has developed with 3G networks, which enable MVNOs to offer subscribers data multimedia services in addition to the existing low-cost traditional voice and SMS services. The impact of MVNOs in each country is variable, as are their business models, but their share of the mobile market both in terms of revenue and subscribers is growing inexorably. To capitalise on the no frills sector, a number of MNOs have either launched their own brands or have bought out existing operators, thus allowing them to tap into an important and growing demographic while still endeavouring to migrate customers to higher-ARPU plans.

Table of Contents

  • 1. Synopsis
  • 2. Market analysis
  • 3. Market background
  • 4. Case studies
  • 5. Australian connection
  • 6. Business models
  • Table 1 – MVNO market share of MNVO subscribers, by business model– 2008 - 2010
  • Chart 1 – Europe – number of MNOs, resellers and MVNOs - 2003 – 2010
  • Chart 2 – France MNO, MVNO subscribers (metropolitan) – 2005 - 2010
  • Chart 3 – TDC domestic subscribers – 2003 – 2009
  • Chart 4 – KPN wholesale mobile subscribers – 2009 – 2010
  • Chart 5 –MVNO revenue (Italy) – 2008 – 2010
  • Exhibit 1 – Selected MVNOs and resellers in Europe – 2010

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Focus Report Profile


Mobile & Wireless Broadband and Media
Mobile Communications (voice and infrastructure)

Number of pages 6

Status Archived

Last updated 24 Nov 2010
Update History

Analyst: Henry Lancaster

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