The Argentine Cooperativa de Telecomunicaciones (Catel) has presented on November 18th the brand of its new virtual mobile operator (MVNO), which will be called ‘Imowi’ (combination of ‘integracion’, ‘movilidad’ and ‘wireless’). Its official launch is scheduled for the first half of 2021.
Based on the license granted by the National Telecommunications Entity of Argentina (Enacom), the cooperatives based in Catel have ran an agreement with Telefonica to use their network and part of their infrastructure to provide mobile service. The next step was the presentation of JSC Ingenium as a technological partner, and the mobile numbering granted by Enacom to provide services in Cordoba, Santa Fe, La Pampa and Buenos Aires, and later in La Rioja, Río Negro and Catamarca. ‘This way, the group headed by Catel is fully capable of offering mobile services competitively, especially in small and medium-sized towns in Argentina, where there is a significant presence of telecommunications cooperatives that are now providing fixed telephony services, internet and TV, but not mobile phone offers yet. With the inclusion of this service, cooperatives will be able to enter quadruple play’, they officially reported from Catel.
The start-up of the service will require an initial investment of USD 2 million, and is expected for the first half of 2021. The cooperatives that make up the first stage of the launch are Colsecor, an entity that represents more than 250 cooperatives throughout the country -; and the Cooperativa Telefonica de Vivienda y otros Servicios Publicos Del Viso Ltda. (TELVISO), the Cooperativa Electrica de Monte Ltda. (COOPMONTE), the Cooperativa Telefpnica de Pinamar Ltda. (TELPIN), the Cooperativa de Provision de Servicios Publicos de Tortuguitas Ltda. . and the Cooperativa Telefonica de Villa Gdor. Galvez Ltda. (TELVGG).
‘The presentation of the brand is another important achievement, it means for us to be already at the gates of the implementation of our cooperative mobile service. We believe that this service will help in guaranteeing access to countless spaces for health, education, social ties, commercial and civil rights and many more, reducing the gaps that are taking place in our country. It is a starting point in the face of the enormous challenge we have to federalize connectivity’, assured Ariel Fernandez Alvarado, President at Catel.
Miguel Factor, Project Advisor at Colsecor’s Telecommunications Department, has also expressed himself on the launch of Imowi, and reported that, with mobile telephony, ‘we see the opportunity to reach places that we have not reached before, and it will also be a possibility for many people to have access to such an essential service for the first time’.
Apart from Catel, and as reported by several specialized websites, the Linzor Capital Partners international fund, which in 2019 acquired the Chilean triple play operator Mundo Pacifico -later rebranded as ‘Mundo’-, officially launched this last Sunday, November 15th, ‘Mundo Movil’, the operator’s new business line, which allows it to officially start its operations as an MVNO, which will be based on the Movistar Chile network. Furthermore, at the beginning of June, Televisa also announced its new mobile telephony offering as MVNO, which it called ‘Izzi Movil’. To provide its new service, Televisa uses the Red Compartida operated by Altan Redes.