Thursday 12 January 2012

MVNO Opportunities

So what has changed since nearly a year ago of speaking to MNOs, MVNOs and MVNEs as well as  two major MVNO conferences? 

The opportunities are there, in the existing form, as per below post and thread on Linkedin, moreover, we have only just scratched the surface of the MVNO to date: we are still only in the "value stage" of wholesale: If you like, we are somewhere in between when Marks and Spencer used to sell everything for 1p on a market stall and when Tesco used to be the "pile them high" almost warehouse experience - 

The "St. Michael" and "taste the difference" is the opportunity from what we have done so far, and this means existing brands and new MVNOs entering the same space but moving further up the value chain with VAS as the Androids and other smartphones take hold of even MVNO handset databases.

The other opportunities are equally interesting at this happens: 
  • Higher end MVNOs - remember Fortnum and Mason predate any of the other wholesale analogies relevant to mobile! Also the Vertu and American Express Black example below
  • More niche MVNOs and MVNEs and MVNAs - the present MNO direct or MVNE model has been awkward for niches, but we are seeing that finally change with lowest end MVNAs offering services from €1,000 set-up to prove a concept or test the water or even refine a service, and even MVNOs setting up without a web page but just a social network page to attract customers...
  • Technology MVNOs: iPads, Garmins, TomToms, Galaxy Pads, Playstations, etc, etc could all benefit from SIMs that can serve their needs, not those of 99% of the SIMs to date where the service has been shaped around lots of calls, some texts and a bit of data slapped on as an afterthought
  • Service based MVNOs: Vertu, American Express, black cards, private banking... with host MNO o2 getting the public Wi-Fi for the lucrative Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea markets, beating Sky and Virgin Media to the post, these are the kind of opportunities... 
Forgive the UK specific examples, but this is where it all kicked off and is my market where I am better places to assess the opportunities, and speak to the MNOs, MVNEs and MVNAs on a weekly basis and discuss these matters, but there are applicable to the ROW

Below post originally posted by Christian Borrman 28:50pm 08/03/11

My other rant from the linkedin MVNO Industry summit group discussion board (see other below) is defining MVNO opportunities and being honest about the opportunity. There are simplified MVNO dichotomy is that the MVNO pipeline is full of either:
a) big brands, with distribution, but no defined / differentiated product to set it aside from the MNO, which already has a brand and a non-differentiated product thank-you very much
b) the great ideas that do not have the distribution, and even then, cannot focus their product enough around the opportunity.
This is outside those that are MVNO in a box potential, who also grossly underestimate the term "in a box" to mean mvno=easy... and then forget to differentiate and simplify the product...
... the rant was sparked about people talking about the power of mobile to bring customers to a supermarket, and how mobile can supplement their database: supermarkets have an age-old ability to bring customers in, its called the threshold or catchment area of poor buggers who have no alternative if they want to eat... and supermarkets know more about their customers than it is probably better to be aware of if you are of the pelican brief persuasion!

originally posted by Christian Borrman 28:50pm 08/03/11

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