MVNE: Everything you need to know

An MVNE, Mobile Virtual Network Enabler

What is an MVNE?

An MVNE, Mobile Virtual Network Enabler, can be defined as an organisation that provides an MVNO with the network infrastructure and related services necessary for it to operate. These can include business support systems, operational support systems and administrative applications. This then allows MVNOs to offer services to their consumers under their own branding, whilst an MVNE remains separated from the consumers only providing the platforms and services they may use.


What is the difference between an MNO, MVNO, MVNE & MVNA?

An MNO, Mobile Network Operator, is a communications provider that owns its own network structure and controls who can access that infostructure. An MVO will also typically own and have access to the physical resources needed to enable a mobile network, these can include the network antennas and office-based services like billing and customer services.

 An MVNO on the other hand is a branded reseller of a network infostructure. To do this an MVNO will pay to or have access to the structure an MNO already has in place. By using this structure an MVNO can then sell mobile services & packages to its subscribers. You will often find MNO may deploy a number of MVNOs as subbrands, this allows them to create new packages and offers to attract a wider or different audience than previously possible without having to invest in a new network structure.

 As mentioned above MVNE or MVNE platforms provide MVNOs with the operational processes and related services needed to operate. These can include planning, billing, customer service or provisioning. An MVNE will not however provide any connectivity services.

Finally, an MVNA or Mobile Virtual Network Aggregator is a provider that buys access to an MNO’s network and then resells it to an MVNO. Many MNOs prefer to use MVNAs as it saves time just selling access to one company.


Why MVNE are important?

MVNEs are vital to the telecom industry due to the fact they specialise in the planning, implementation and management of mobile services. This allows MVNOs to outsource integration, and ongoing business or technical operational management. This allows an MVNO to greatly reduce the amount of upfront capital expenditure needed to launch an MVNO. MVNEs can also offer further financial benefits to MVNOs, in some cases they provide arrangements to cover start-up costs and can offer reduced wholesale airtime costs.

Beyond the start-up phase of an MVNO, using an MVNE can be key to reducing ongoing operational costs. An MVNEs technical experience and expertise also lead to a smooth and more enjoyable customer experience.


What makes a successful MVNE?

The best MVNE provides connectivity with the highest coverage and reach whilst ensuring a partner centric experience with an MVNE Platform.


Flexibility and Market Fit

One of the keys to look for in a successful MVNE is how their services can be deployed to help you cement where you want to fit into the current market. When launching a new MVNO you’ll have an idea of the target demographic or gap in the market you feel you can capitalise on. To maximise this, an MVNE must allow you to craft these custom service offers and deploy them in a timely manner.

Once you have launched your custom service offering it is vital that this offering has the flexibility to match the current market demand. Using customer feedback and past or current marketing trends MVNOs should continually tweak their offering to remain attractive to customers and stay ahead of competitors. A successful MVNE would therefore be able to provide rich, data-driven feedback on how your current offering is performing and how your current customers are reacting to it. It will then be flexible enough to support you in changing and optimising your offering quickly.


Customer and Engagement

An MVNO, or any service provider, will collect a huge amount of data on its customers. What makes them successful is how they use this data and the actions they deliver from it. Manually processing this data is no longer an option so a successful MVNE should deploy automation and real-time charging across data sources to ensure a clear overview of consumer behaviour and efficient operations.

Engaging with customers will also be key to gathering direct feedback. To do this effectively, MVNOs will need to have applications allowing them to speak to customers in real-time, in a method best suited to them. A successful MVNE will therefore support customer service agents to directly communicate with customers quickly and effectively, whilst also collecting vital data and using business intelligence tools to optimise the business processes.


Operational Processes

Whilst having a great offering is key to the success of an MVNO this will count for very little if the operational processes within the business don’t work. At its core, an MVNO needs to be able to add new subscribers quickly, distribute new models or SIMs quickly, activate those SIMs and provide quick and accurate billing or payment. An effective MVNE will therefore enable you to complete these base operational processes effectively. Many successful MVNEs will deploy automation to allow MVNOs to offer a quick and effective service whilst keeping down operational costs.


Effective Scaling

If an MVNO has successfully launched and is engaging with customer feedback and data to optimise their offering, the chances are they will be successful and will therefore need to scale up their business. MVNOs, they will often need to scale quickly and deal with a large incoming number of subscribers in a small time frame. Therefore, to be successful an MVNE will need to have the ability to scale its offering in line with the business's demands and rapidly add capacity when needed. It is also key that this scaling doesn’t impact the current offering or subscriber base.

Lifecycle Software provides a wide range of solutions including: OCS, Online Charging System, CCS (Converged Charging System), BSS (Business Support System) billing and more. We work with a wide range of network operators, MVNOs, and IoT providers to allow telecoms and other subscription-based services to thrive in our ever-growing connected world. Our MVNE Platform is ideal for operators looking to scale and expand its ecosystem, allowing new MVNOs to plug in and launch easily. Get in touch to find out how Lifecycle and help accelerate your business growth.


Find out more about our MVNE Platform here. 

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