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South Africa : VIRTUAL SIM agreement to boost mobile access signed by Airtel

June 10, 2014

A group wide agreement with virtual SIM solutions firm Movirtu is signed by the Mobile operator Airtel Africa providing individuals who cannot afford handsets with communications and banking capabilities. The agreement comes after Airtel s successful launch of the service in Madagascar, and it is at present setting its sights on the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Movirtu said in a statement, Movirtu s patented virtual SIM platform allows mobile operators to provide services to users who cannot afford to purchase a personal handset while also allowing subscribers to keep multiple numbers on same handset .

The service lets a user to temporarily activate their number on a friend s phone or share a phone amongst a group of individuals. The virtual SIM system permits access to phone calls, text messaging and value-added services including mobile banking.

Willie Ellis, director of products and innovation at Airtel said, Working with Movirtu in Madagascar proved to us that there is a strong appetite amongst people who currently do not own a mobile phone for a low-cost, secure service that keeps them connected .

Having proven the business case, we now plan to roll out Movirtu Share throughout our subsidiaries in Africa. And because Movirtu s underlying Virtual SIM technology makes it easy for us to dynamically attach/detach numbers to different handsets, we have the option of launching additional services in the future.

The platform is in addition targeted at business users, letting them to separate their private and business calls without needing an additional device or second physical SIM card.

Movirtu chief executive officer (CEO) Carsten Brinkschulte said, The framework agreement with Airtel Africa will help some of the approximately one billion people across the globe who are still without a mobile phone to gain access to the mobile network. It s clear that there is a significant market opportunity to convert many of these people into mobile subscribers for the first time, with their own phone number and prepaid account .

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Source: TendersInfo (India)

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