China Telecom is in talks with British networks to launch an MVNO service early next year in the UK. China’s third largest mobile operator wants to target both local Chinese residents as well as an increasing number of tourists from China. The goal is to hit 50,000 users in the first year of operation and eventually surpass 200,000 users when the network will actually make some money.
According to the UK government’s tourist promotion agency, more than 100,000 Chinese people visit the country each year and that number is expected to increase by 250,000 per year by 2014. In other words, China Telecom may be onto something with such a service.
Then, if everything goes as planned, the next step is to expand to other countries, including Germany and France. The latter is especially interesting, with a target market of 500,000 people, according to Ou Yan, CEO of China Telecom Europe.
Aside from providing the mobile service, China Telecom’s British unit will also provide its Chinese users with content in their own language…
We’ll certainly be watching for any news on expansion of China’s operators to Europe and let you know as soon as something interesting comes up. Stay tuned in the meantime.