Warsaw, Poland, September 16, 2014—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, together with the European Bank for Reconstruction
and Development (EBRD), Delta Partners Emerging Markets TMT Growth Fund
II, and CEE Mobile Capital LLC (spearheaded by Dick Kiphart of KGC Capital
LLC), will provide €40 million of growth capital to Virgin Mobile Central
and Eastern Europe (VMCEE) to boost access to affordable broadband mobile
services for youth and lower-income groups in the region.
At a time when investment activity in the region is declining, the loan
demonstrates the success of innovative business models that leverage existing
infrastructure. The deal with VMCEE, an early stage mobile virtual network
operator (MVNO), is expected to catalyze competition and innovation and
stimulate economic growth by expanding affordable access to voice and broadband
"Virgin Mobile is one of the most successful MVNO brands globally,
with an excellent track record of improving services for customers and
generating returns for shareholders,” said Alan Gow, CEO VMCEE and previously
co-founder and managing director of Virgin Mobile U.K. “We are excited
by the growth opportunities in Poland, Turkey, and across the CEE region.
Now, with the support of our new shareholders, we look forward to accelerating
our growth in Poland and building the region's leading MVNO operation."
Tomasz Telma, IFC Director for Europe and Central Asia, said: “IFC’s
global partnership with Virgin Mobile allows us to support their efforts
to broaden their reach and introduce innovative services and knowhow to
the region. This project provides much-needed, affordable high-quality
access to mobile services, introduces new technologies, creates employment
promotes competition in the sector.”
Izzet Guney, EBRD’s Director of Information Communications and Technology,
noted: “We are pleased to champion virtual mobile network operations by
supporting Virgin Mobile’s expansion in the CEE market. The MVNO business
model is at very early stages of development in the region and we are pleased
to see our financing bringing along such strong partners as CEE Mobile,
Delta and IFC. This is a landmark investment in the sector, bringing innovation
and strengthening competition among mobile market operators.”
IFC supports economic development in Europe and Central Asia by expanding
access to finance, improving infrastructure, and tackling climate change
through a mix of investments and advisory services. With continued eurozone
volatility, IFC also supports diversification and promotes access to basic
goods and services to reduce poverty and boost shared prosperity. IFC invested
a record total of nearly $4.7 billion in 117 projects across ECA countries
in fiscal year 2014.
About Virgin Mobile Central and Eastern Europe
Virgin Mobile Central and Eastern Europe runs the Virgin Mobile businesses
across the CEE region. It aims to become the leading MVNO in this
high growth-potential area; targeting a potential market of over 275 million
mobile consumers. To know more, please e-mail email@example.com
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development
institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private
enterprises in about 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and
influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity.
In FY14, we provided more than $22 billion in financing to improve lives
in developing countries and tackle the most urgent challenges of development.
For more information, visit www.ifc.org.