Regulations are in place and 19 Iranian companies have passed the criteria check to be granted an MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator) license.
According to ItIran via Tasnim News, 51 companies applied for an MVNO permit to provide sim cards to users. Companies were requested to provide the necessary documents before the deadline to the regulatory. The assessment of these 51 companies was started immediately after the deadline. After the assessment, a total of 19 companies were announced that were eligible to obtain the MVNO permit to operate as a virtual operator.
From the day the licenses would be handed over to these eligible companies, a 6 month period of time will be in place for the companies to choose and negotiate with Iran’s 3 operating networks as the hosting mobile operating network for the MVNOs. The regulatory has mentioned that this 6 month period will not be extended for any of these companies, and the license to operate as an MVNO will expire if a deal with one of the mobile operators is not signed before the 6 month period.
According to the deputy of technical assessments of the regulatory, one of the companies is in its final stages of getting the MVNO license and would be able to provide it’s sim cards about 3 months after the license is issued.
With the regulation framework of Mobile Virtual Network Operators in place, there will be a fierce competition not only between the MVNOs themselves but also with their hosting mobile operators. New laws on lowering the cost of the internet are in place from the government which will also make the competition even more fierce.
Among the 19 companies eligible to obtain the permits and license, banks such as Saman and Parsian can be seen as well as some Internet Service Providers such as Hiweb and other players in the market. We have to wait and see which of these companies will sign deals with the three mobile operating networks Hamrah-Aval, Irancell and Rightel. The three operators must have been working on their technical bandwidth to provide these services to the companies in order to not fall behind the market.
By the next upcoming months, we will see sim cards with multiple brands in the market. We have to wait and see what the market feedback will be to these new services in Iran.