European Mobile Services Industry

European Mobile Services Industry

Jarkko Vesa (Helsinki School of Economics, Finland)
Copyright: © 2005 |Pages: 15
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-584-9.ch007


“We don’t believe that a business model, where mobile operator takes a large proportion of our subscription revenue, is going to a viable long-term option.” Andy Bird, former CEO of Turner International (2003) Europe is an extremely difficult market for any type of service-related business, and an even bigger challenge for mobile service providers due to various regulatory issues, as we will discuss later on. The reason for this is that Europe is not a single market (despite the hard effort by the European Union with its directives and guidelines), but a man-made and culturally fragmented economic region. As Whalley and Curwen (2003) point out in their analysis of licence acquisition strategies in the European mobile communications industry, Europe must be defined before it can be analyzed. They define Europe as “encompassing the member states of the European Economic Free Trade Area (EFTA), the European Union (EU), those countries that have applied to join the European Union and all other sovereign countries within the post-Communist era understanding of Europe” (p. 2). Based on this definition, Whalley and Curwen found 41 countries to be included in the European mobile market. Albeit it is possible to cluster these countries to some extent according to common language (e.g., Germany, Austria, and the German-speaking part of Switzerland), culture, or some other factors (e.g., the close cooperation between the Nordic countries that include Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden), the fact is that the European mobile services market easily consists of over 20 different markets. No wonder that academic research and business analyses are typically done on a country-by-country basis.

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