Mobility and Telecoms: International Alliances and Deals – MM Report

This is a fairly comprehensive deals in the telecoms and mobility industry in recent months.


Zimbabwe operator NetOne is deploying digital security fi rm Gemalto’s LinqUs solution for Mobile Money Transfer. The off er, being marketed as the OneWallet service, works on 100% of the handsets and will enable all NetOne subscribers to perform secure and convenient money transfer using their mobile phone. Subscribers can make secure and easy peer-to-peer money transfers, pay every-day bills and top up their prepaid phone cards. NetOne’s customers can have their salaries paid directly onto their phones – a feature that greatly empowers the unbanked with a secure and convenient digital wallet solution.


NetOne also intends to work with the Government of Zimbabwe and Pension Fund schemes to allow the OneWallet to be used for pension payments and thus remove the need for traveling long distances for purposes of collecting pension payments. Gemalto conducts Mobile Money events in countries such as Ghana.


Bangalore-based value-added services provider OnMobile has announced a partnership with Starfi sh Mobile, a leading content aggregator, to off er ring back tones (RBT) and interactive voice response (IVR) to mobile subscribers in Africa.


Under the agreement, Starfi sh Mobile’s content would be deployed on OnMobile’s RBT & IVR technology platform, enabling telecom operators in the African continent to off er innovative music services to their subscribers, the company said in a statement today.


Starfi sh Mobile International has operations in 21 countries in Africa, and has announced relationships with operators like Vodacom, MTN, Tigo, Zain (now Airtel Africa), Qtel, and Warid. It has partnerships with over 65 diff erent content suppliers, covering Text based Information on Demand, Wallpapers, Ring Tones, Games and Applications, and Video.


Starfi sh also has partnerships with the likes of the BBC and German media company Deutsche Welle. The OnMobile partnership allows Starfi sh to leverage its relationships with content partners and telecom operators to off er RBT and IVR services. In Africa, OnMobile has deployments in Tanzania and Egypt.
Deutsche Welle is now off ering a new text messaging (SMS) news service for its listeners and users in the Republic of Tanzania. The initial launch will focus on text-based services in Kiswahili covering news from Africa and around the world as well as sports-related services. In order to disseminate content to the widest possible audience, multiple language services and products will follow the fi rst phase of launch. Deutsche Welle’s Kiswahili service is among the most popular radio programs in


Tanzania. Around 70 percent of Tanzanians are familiar with Deutsche Welle and 33 percent are frequent listeners of the Kiswahili program. Deutsche Welle has appointed Starfi sh Mobile East Africa Limited as its technology provider in Tanzania, where the broadcaster will have the opportunity to deploy mobile services in the Kiswahili language to more than 19 million subscribers from the Vodacom, Tigo and Airtel mobile networks.
With a current audience reach of nearly 90 million around the globe, Deutsche Welle is aiming to widen its reach in countries like Tanzania, where Web penetration is low. By making news services available through mobile technology, subscribers will be able to access news updates. Deutsche Welle viewers and listeners also have the opportunity to view and listen to television and radio programming via mobile.


“To some extent, mobile phones have succeeded in an area where the Web has struggled,” according to Naser Shrouf, Deutsche Welle’s Head of Sales and Distribution Africa and Middle East. “Mobile communication has made it possible, both in aff ordability and accessibility, for people who are in the most remote areas to communicate not only with family, friends and colleagues, but also to be a ‘voice’ in current events by interacting in polling and comment activities via SMS,” according to Reshma Bharmal-Shariff , Managing Director of Starfi sh Mobile East Africa.


Alcatel-Lucent has its contract renewed with Etisalat Nigeria.


In other deals, Bangalore-headquartered Subex has been chosen for a $12 million licence contract by a mobile group operating in Europe and Africa to implement its Revenue Operations Center (ROC) platform for fraud management and revenue assurance. ROC fraud management is built to help CSPs (Communication Service Providers) move toward fraud prevention by eliminating known frauds, reducing freerun time, augmenting internal controls and continuous fraud management process improvement. ROC revenue assurance also assists an operator with its investigation, diagnosis and recovery of these revenues.


Sources: Tekedia,  Mobile Monday, ITU



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