Scan Mobile has acquired Mobile Channel Network (MCN), a provider of branded content services such as MTV ringtones.
MCN will operate as a separate business unit within Scan Mobile, continuing to provide its content services and OTA Manager, a mobile provisioning system for mass-configuration of handsets. Scan will integrate the two companies’ product lines, marketing its own portfolio of mobile applications to MCN’s existing customers and using OTA Manager to enhance its own offerings. MCN’s primary asset is its exclusive license to sell MTV ringtones and logos in Europe and Asia. Scan already has several high profile customers for its mobile services, including Vodafone and Orange.
“The acquisition of Mobile Channel Network allows Scan Mobile to immediately serve over 50 percent of the world’s top mobile network operators with a very robust application portfolio,” said Julian Hardy, CEO of Scan Mobile. “MCN’s services, such as MTV Ringtones, enhance Scan Mobile’s breadth of offerings, making Scan a one-stop application source for mobile network operators. Mobile network operators are looking for ways to increase their wireless data revenues by offering new applications and services. Partnering with a market leader such as Scan Mobile, MNOs are able to deliver compelling offerings to subscribers that deliver entertaining and life enriching services through their mobile.”
This acquisition offers good synergies for Scan. Ringtones and logos are solid revenue generators and the exclusive rights to the MTV brand are valuable. Scan has concentrated primarily on messaging and commerce services, so there is good potential for cross-selling MCN’s products to existing operator customers. There is certainly an advantage in scale too – most operators still have complex and lengthy processes for launching applications on their networks, so the ability to source content from a single trusted partner will be attractive.
The value of OTA Manager is more difficult to appraise. Its auto-configuration capabilities are compelling for consumers and simplify administration for operators. However, it is difficult to put a tangible value on something which essentially completes the mobile services package, rather than offering distinct advantages of its own.
Originally published by PMN Mobile Industry Intelligence, the subscription-based analysis and insight platform founded by Marek Pawlowski.