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Business

Singapore-India telecoms target Indonesia and Australia

MyRepublic and Tata Comm stretch their mobile service across Asia-Pacific

MyRepublic has been trying to get into the mobile business since 2015. (Photo from MyRepublic's Facebook page)

SINGAPORE -- Singapore's broadband internet provider MyRepublic is teaming up with India's Tata Communications to provide new mobile services in the Asia-Pacific, as part of its plans to gain more market share in the region.

MyRepublic will integrate its business processes with Tata Comm's mobility platform, Tata Communications MOVE, to manage operations including service activation, new billing plans and value-added services. The company will also gain access to Tata Comm's mobile network point-of-presence system in Asia and globally.

Malcolm Rodrigues, CEO of MyRepublic, said the company aims to introduce "digital-first, worry-free mobile services" to the Singapore market. He added that the partnership would allow MyRepublic to introduce mobile services in "an agile, cost-effective, and scalable manner." It plans to launch similar services in Australia, New Zealand, and Indonesia.

Started in 2011 as an internet service provider, MyRepublic is backed by shareholders including Indonesian conglomerate Sinar Mas, and Xaviel Niel, founder of French telco Free.

The company has been trying to enter the mobile business since 2015. It was expected to become Singapore's fourth telco, but lost the bid to Australia's TPG Telecom in 2016.

MyRepublic has since opted for partnerships instead to provide mobile services. In May, it formed a partnership with StarHub, Singapore's second-largest telecom carrier, to offer services under a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) arrangement. MVNO deals allow companies to provide mobile services by buying mobile bandwidth from one of the incumbent players, with no need to develop their own networks.

The partnership also reflects Tata Communications' decision to focus on commercial telecom after a failed attempt at the consumer market in India. Last year, it sold off its troubled consumer telecom businesses to Bharti Airtel, India's largest mobile services provider, after a long and intense period of competition in the industry.

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