Sinar Mas and Xavier Niel inject US$24M in MyRepublic
Singaporean ISP MyRepublic will use the funds to enhance its services and brand; will also expand to New Zealand in latter half of 2014By Shiwen Yap 10 Jul, 2014
MyRepublic has announced two new major stakeholders — Sunshine Network, the telco arm of Indonesian conglomerate Sinar Mas, and Xavier Niel, Founder of French telco Free.
Both have made an investment totalling S$30 million (US$24 million), with Sunshine Network investing $20 million (US$16 million) and Niel investing S$10 million (US$8 million).
Malcolm Rodrigues, CEO, MyRepublic said, “MyRepublic is flattered and encouraged by the trust and partnership of Xavier Niel and Sinar Mas. These strategic relationships don’t just present opportunities for us to learn from larger, more experienced players, but also help to push the MyRepublic brand further into Asia and bolster our plans to become the next telco in Singapore.”
This injection of funds will support the enhancement of the MyRepublic’s services and brand. It will also fund the launch of MyRepublic into the New Zealand market in the latter half of 2014.
MyRepublic’s recent proposal to be Singapore’s fourth telecommunications company aroused attention. Given the stagnation of the market and domination by an oligopoly of Singtel, Starhub and M1, MyRepublic’s entry into the market changes the status quo. Its 1Gbps fibre broadband offering disrupted the Singapore fibre broadband industry, forcing the focus back onto consumers.
MyRepublic’s low-cost operations model attracted significant attention from Sinar Mas. Under the traditional operations models, Indonesian consumers pay less for telecom services than their counterparts in Singapore. The investment is aimed at creating a mutual benefit for both companies.
Xavier Niel has been referred as the ‘Steve Jobs’ of the European telecommunications industry, due to the way in which his company, Free, entered the French telecom market and disrupted norms by offering mobile plans at half the price of competitors and establishing new benchmarks in service and pricing.