Orange is talking up its plans to enter the South African mobile market as an MVNO, and is also looking at joining a consortium which will build a widespread Wi-Fi network, according to TechCentral.
The company is pushing to increase competition in the country’s mobile market and is mulling whether to join the unnamed Wi-Fi group, according to Sébastien Crozier, CEO of Orange Horizons, which explores opportunities outside the group’s existing geographic footprint.
However, Crozier says Orange is not looking to buy an existing operator in South Africa in the short to medium term.
The country currently only has one MVNO, Virgin Mobile.
Crozier also says in the interview that incumbents Vodacom and Telkom Mobile are anti-competitive in some of their pricing. He says the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa), the country’s regulator, should look at the practice of pricing on-net calls at rates that are below the price of wholesale call termination.
He also says that some operators charge lower retail data rates than the wholesale rates they offer third parties to resell their products. And that the current termination rates are too high.
“It’s a real problem for MVNOs to enter the market. MVNOs can bring innovation and competition, but what we want is fair competition,” he said
A MVNO launch in South Africa is consistent with Orange Horizons’ strategy. It is also looking at online and physical stores, and online media content. It already has an e-commerce website in South Africa.