SOURCE: Elephant Talk Communications

Elephant Talk Communications

February 28, 2011 10:15 ET

Elephant Talk Communications CEO Sees Growth for Virtual Networks in 2011

SCHIPHOL, THE NETHERLANDS--(Marketwire - February 28, 2011) -  Elephant Talk Communications, Inc. (OTCBB: ETAK) (, an international provider of business software and services to the telecommunications and financial services industries, announced today that trends in 2011 are fueling growth in virtual wireless networks -- and major opportunities for companies that operate those networks.

"Virtual mobile networks are opening up whole new business models and reaching new industries," says Steven van der Velden, CEO of Elephant Talk. "The key trend is the growing importance of smartphones and other mobile handsets. Smartphone technology makes it possible to deposit money by taking a picture of a check and sending it to the bank, to get personalized coupons from supermarkets while grocery shopping, or to send data to your doctor. Mobile devices are increasingly becoming people's main connection to the larger world. We should stop viewing them as only a way to make calls."

Companies and entire industries are eager to exploit this connection. Banks and financial institutions can reach more customers by offering services over wireless networks. Supermarkets can entice shoppers with new offerings. Government agencies can save time and money by allowing citizens to register their cars or perform other functions over the phone. Even political parties and religious organizations can organize constituents and communities in this virtual wireless 'cloud.' Mr. van der Velden says, "A lot of new businesses will be using the cloud by becoming mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) to have a two-way discussion with their customers and communities."

But these businesses aren't about to become actual telecommunications companies themselves, by building their own mobile networks. Moreover, some major telecommunications companies are finding it easier to outsource their wireless networks than to operate the networks themselves. So both of these groups are turning to so-called mobile virtual network enablers (MVNEs), such as Elephant Talk. Elephant Talk essentially provides an entire telecom network in a handy package -- a full mobile operation out of a box. All that's needed to complete the network is renting space on the spectrum and antennas of mobile telecom operators. That service has enabled Elephant Talk to win keys customers such as T-Mobile Netherlands BV and Vizzavi Spain, part of the Vodafone Group.

Already, MVNOs have 85 million subscribers, according to the research firm Informa Telecoms & Media, with rapid growth continuing. The firm predicts that total revenues for MVNOs will climb to $80 billion per year by 2012. (

Running an MVNO, however, isn't easy, warns RCR Wireless News. "Getting the back office systems in place -- billing, customer care, network interface, the service delivery platform -- are so important for MVNO success that they can make or break a deal." That is why more and more MVNOs are turning to a MVNE like Elephant Talk to fully outsource all their requirements through one single solution.

These challenges of running a network mean that only experienced MVNOs and MVNEs with the best technology will capture the largest share of this growing business. "At Elephant Talk, one of our advantages is that our software platform is one fully integrated system," Van der Velden explains. That makes it possible to seamlessly carry out all the operations needed on the network, to adapt pricing on the fly, to quickly add upgrades and new features, and to let end-customers fully manage themselves through an easy-to-use, self-care windows interface. "Our MVNO's can make changes in services in hours rather than months, as required in many other virtual networks," says van der Velden.

That experience and capability have already won Elephant Talk a number of customers. In December 2010, Elephant Talk announced an agreement with KPN Group Belgium NV; signed another agreement with CLUB MOBIEL to provide Dutch soccer fans with mobile ticketing and a variety of other services; and signed a memorandum of understanding agreement (MOU) with Cleartech (a joint-venture of leading Brazilian IT companies EDS, CPqD and DBA Engenharia) to become its mobile virtual network enabler (MVNE) partner in Brazil. "Analysts and experts like Carlo Gessi at Accenture are predicting a boom year in 2011 for mobile virtual network operators, and we are encouraged by the partnerships we have already been able to create," says van der Velden.

About Elephant Talk Communications:

Elephant Talk Communications, Inc. (OTCBB: ETAK) is an international provider of business software and services to the telecommunications and financial services industry. The company enables both mobile carriers and virtual operators to offer a full suite of products, delivery platforms, support services, superior industry expertise and high quality customer service without substantial upfront investments from clients. Elephant Talk provides global telecommunication companies, mobile network operators, banks, supermarkets, consumer product companies, media firms, and other businesses a full suite of products and services that enables them to fully provide telecom services as part of their business offerings. The company offers various dynamic products that include remote health care, credit card fraud prevention, mobile internet ID security, multi-country discounted phone services, loyalty management services, and a whole range of other emerging customized mobile services. For more information visit

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