It’s no secret that the MVNO market is booming. New virtual network operators are continuing to spring up globally, presenting fresh opportunities across the telecoms market.
As these new MVNOs are often small and sometimes have no experience of the telecoms industry, there’s a demand for a tailored solution to manage their go to market process.
And it’s this demand that spawned the rise of the MVNE. An MVNE – or Mobile Virtual Network Enabler – provides services that allow new MVNOs to enter the market quickly.
Benefits of the MVNE model
From the perspective of an MVNO, the MVNE model has three main benefits. Firstly, MVNOs can go to market much quicker with the help of an MVNE, some as quickly as within four to six weeks, so MVNOs will waste no time in making a profit.
On top of this the MVNE model is opex-based, so working with one removes the need for a large up-front investment. Finally, MVNEs limit the technical complexity of setting up an MVNO, which is particularly important for businesses that don’t have previous experience in the telecoms market.
Different approaches to MVNE services
Traditionally, MVNEs are providers who deliver services such as CRM or billing platforms. Some also act as MVNAs – or Mobile Virtual Network Aggregators – which means they purchase airtime from the MNO and then sell it on to the MVNOs, while also providing other MVNE services. In such cases, the MNO and MVNO have no direct relationship, with the MVNA/E serving as a link between them.
But recently there has been a shift towards carrier partners offering in-house MVNE services, which gives them a new source of revenue. Doing so also cuts out the middleman created by external MVNEs or MVNAs. Some MNOs have done this by acquiring an MVNE, and others by partnering with various technology vendors to create an end-to-end solution for MVNOs.
Other types of companies may not act as MVNEs per se, but offer certain services that help MVNOs operate. For example, CSG International offers billing systems and managed services to the MVNO market.
The market appears to be wide open for businesses to take advantage of the boom in new MVNOs and offer MVNE services in a variety of capacities.
The SmartIPX viewpoint
At SmartIPX we think there’s no one solution for everyone when it comes to MVNE services. Very large companies setting up as an MVNO may not need any form of MVNE, but smaller companies, and those from outside the telecoms sector, could need higher levels of support.
New MVNOs should look for the best carrier partner to work with first, and choose what kind of MVNE service provider they need second.
For a relaxed discussion about how SmartIPX can help your MVNO succeed, contact us anytime.