Mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) Lycamobile has commercially launched its services in Romania, the 18th country in its international footprint, the UK-based group announced in a press release. The launch came via a Full MVNO agreement formed with Telekom Romania Mobile Communications (formerly Cosmote) in September 2014. Lycamobile chairman Subaskaran Allirajah commented: ‘With such strong demand for pre-paid services, Romania was a natural next step for our international expansion. Launching there strengthens our offering even further across Europe and ensures we can help millions more people benefit from low-cost international calls. This is our first new market of 2015 but we have an exciting roadmap of announcements planned for the rest of the year as we aim to grow our user base by 25%.’
The company’s release added: ‘Romanians will now be able to make international calls for just EUR0.01 [USD0.01114] per minute thanks to Lycamobile’s pre-paid SIMs, a particularly attractive proposition to those calling members of the country’s large diaspora around the world. According to the Romanian government, around six-to-eight million Romanians live outside the country’s borders, including an estimated 3.4 million in the other 17 countries in Lycamobile’s network. Consumer appetite for pre-paid mobile services in Romania has traditionally been very strong. There are 12.9 million pre-paid mobile users in the country… 54% of all mobile calls in Romania are made by pre-paid users.’
Founded in 2006 with a mission ‘to connect friends and family around the world’, Lycamobile has grown to serve twelve million customers in markets including the UK, US and Australia, while the group claims ‘the largest European footprint of any mobile operator, covering 80% of the continent’s population.’ Lycamobile’s turnover reached GBP1.5 billion (USD2.3 billion) in 2014.