News: Lycamobile, an international mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) reseller based in the UK, has reportedly soft-launched in Austria off the back of the A1 Telecom Austria network, according to TeleGeography. Lycamobile, which was launched in 2006, has said it now has 30mn subscribers across the globe, and currently provides MVNO services throughout 17 countries: the UK, Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Italy, Spain, Australia, France, Germany, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Ireland and the US.
BMI View : Austria is home to one of the most developed telecoms markets in Europe, with high penetration of mobile and broadband services. However, Austria's all-important mobile market reported slower than expected growth in 2012 and Q113 as the weaker domestic economy weighed on consumer spending and made operators' low-cost no-frills services more appealing than ever. Market saturation also has a role to play in the slowdown of growth and operators must work harder to extract more value from the customers they already have. The postpaid user base contracted slightly as a result and was buoyed only by the higher value service from 3 Austria. This leaves some interesting opportunities in the MVNO space, and Tele2 and UPC appear to be ready to move in on the converged services opportunity.