China Telecom close to selecting European MVNO partner

China Telecom, China's third largest wireless operator, is in talks with potential network owners with the aim of launching an MVNO service early next year in the UK. If successful, then the company says it will look to launch services in Germany and France soon afterwards.

China Telecom Europe's Ou Yan

The venture, according to Ou Yan, CEO of China Telecom Europe, plans to target local Chinese residents and visitors to Europe by providing them with content in their own language.

"My target is the local Chinese community and Chinese tourists when they come to the UK," Ou told Global Telecoms Business. "We want to improve the lifestyle for Chinese people in the UK."

The exec confirmed that he hopes to recruit 50,000 customers in the first year of operation, but notes, "We will need 200,000 to break even."

According to the UK government's tourist promotion agency, over 100,000 visit the country from China each year, while some observers expect the number to reach 250,000 a year by 2014.

While China Telecom will not be forming a separate company to run its European MVNO services, Ou said that the UK "has a very good environment for MVNO projects, and I will expand into other countries once the UK has been successful." He said believes that France has strong potential with a target market of 500,000 people.

For more:
- see this Global Telecoms Business article

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