European free mobile service provider perfects recipe for expansion - Blyk to collaborate with Nokia Siemens Networks in Belgium and the Netherlands

Published October 23rd, 2008 - 12:23 GMT

Blyk, the free mobile network for 16-24 year olds funded by advertising has chosen Nokia Siemens Networks to host its core network as it expands into the Netherlands and Belgium. Prepaid charging, messaging systems and device management will also be hosted for those two countries. The hosting service delivered from a central site across several countries sets a new benchmark for the industry.

Blyk runs an advertising funded mobile service aimed at young people. It provides free text messages and calls to young subscribers funded by advertisements delivered directly to their phones. Blyk started its service in the United Kingdom in mid 2007.

The centrally hosted solution provided by Nokia Siemens Networks will help Blyk to expand its service simultaneously to the Netherlands and Belgium quickly and cost-effectively. Recently in September, Blyk announced having doubled its member base in the UK to 200 000 from last autumn.

“At Blyk we want to be pioneers in this industry. The company’s strength lays in its innovative idea and business model. The telecommunications industry, however, is incredibly competitive and leadership in the youth segment requires continuous business and service innovation,” said Blyk’s CEO and co-founder Pekka Ala-Pietilä. “Our collaboration with Nokia Siemens Networks provides us with the opportunity to focus on our core business, with the confidence that the service operations are in good hands.”

Under the two turnkey service deals, Nokia Siemens Networks will provide the infrastructure, prepaid charging and messaging systems, software and operations to Blyk as a fully managed, hosted service to Belgium and the Netherlands. The hosting service is delivered remotely from the Nokia Siemens Networks hosting center in Vienna.

“This agreement further reinforces collaboration between Nokia Siemens Networks and Blyk, a true innovator in the mobile industry,” said Patrik Sallner, Global Head of Hosting Services, Nokia Siemens Networks. “With these agreements, Nokia Siemens Networks will demonstrate the benefits of its shareable multi-country mobile virtual network operator platform. The centrally hosted model allows the companies to quickly and cost-effectively deploy services across multiple countries without the need for significant numbers of local staff or investments,” he added.

About Blyk
Blyk is a free mobile network for young people that’s funded by advertising. Blyk links young people with brands they like and gives them free texts and minutes every month. Blyk was co-founded in 2006 by Pekka Ala-Pietilä and Antti Öhrling and has offices in Helsinki, Finland; London, UK; Amsterdam, The Netherlands; and Brussels, Belgium. Blyk is now operating in the UK, and has announced its expansion to The Netherlands, Belgium, Spain and Germany.
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About Nokia Siemens Networks
Nokia Siemens Networks is a leading global enabler of communications services. The company provides a complete, well-balanced product portfolio of mobile and fixed network infrastructure solutions and addresses the growing demand for services with 20,000 service professionals worldwide. Nokia Siemens Networks is one of the largest telecommunications infrastructure companies with operations in 150 countries. The company is headquartered in Espoo, Finland.


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