Orange launches its MVNO assault


Orange has signed two ethnic market MVNOs and restructured its business development team as it bids to increase its share of the wholesale market.

It confirmed last week it has signed MVNO Globalcell, pitched to Eastern Europeans in the UK.

It has also signed ethnic market global number one MVNO Lycamobile, although it refused to comment on the deal.

Orange confirmed Stephen Harris has been appointed UK business development director, tasked with expanding its MVNO roster. Harris was previously commercial pricing director.

He reports to vice president of new business, wholesale and strategy Marc Overton. “We have ambitious plans to grow into new and exciting areas,” said Overton. “The team is set up to ensure Orange has a dedicated focus on new commercial opportunities.”

Globalcell’s prepay SIM service will target Polish, Russian, Lithuanian and Slovak migrants to the UK with local language marketing.

It is Orange’s fourth MVNO proper, following tie-ups with ad-funded MVNO Blyk, ethnic market MVNO IDT Mobile and its fixed/mobile convergence service with Cable & Wireless.

Orange claims more than 2.5 million MVNO customers, although it also counts 3 roaming customers. Its current share of the wholesale market is around 12 per cent, way behind T-Mobile, Vodafone and O2.