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Five consortia apply for KSA MVNO licences

Companies including Axiom Mobile and Virgin mobile confirmed as applicants

MVNOs have the potential to shake up KSA's mobile market.
MVNOs have the potential to shake up KSA's mobile market.

Five consortia have each applied for one of three MVNO licences up for grabs in Saudi Arabia, the country's telecoms regulator, the CITC has confirmed.

The Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) said that by May 11, 2013, which was the deadline to apply for the MVNO licences, the following consortia had applied: Axiom Mobile, a UAE-based mobile retailer; Virgin Mobile Saudi Consortium; Jawraa Consortium "Lebara"; FastNet Consortium; and Safari Consortium.

"CITC will announce the results including successful applicants after evaluating each application according to the details previously published stated in the RFA document," the regulator said in a statement.

"Licencing of MVNO services is considered as an important step in the liberalisation of the telecommunications market in Saudi Arabia, and is aimed at providing more choices for users of communications and information technology services," the CITC added.

The regulator is expected to take up to three months to select the winning applications.

Sources close to the process said that Virgin Mobile had applied to operate on the network of STC, while Axiom has applied to operate on Zain's network.

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