Polar Wireless (BCDI) is a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO), which intends to monetize its proprietary technology. The firm’s SIM cards work in conjunction with current providers to eliminate roaming charges without the hassle of changing phone numbers or customer behavior. Fast growing mobile phone technology combined with the up-tick in global travel has made the world a very small space, however high costs and hassles still exist. We feel the firm is in the sweet spot of this high growth area. We like the firm’s business model, yet caution investors the firm is in cash burn mode and will most likely have to do a capital raising event.
Since our initiation report Polar has been on a tear, signing distribution agreements in Pakistan, the UAE, and North America, implementing a back up call center, and completing system build outs. Our estimates and outlook remain unchanged. Polar could see revenues in 1-2 quarters from the distribution agreements.
On April 7, 2011 Polar Wireless announced that it had signed a sales and support services agreement with Roam4Less which provides for the distribution of the Polar Roaming Chip to Roam4Less corporate clients. Roam4Less is a leading provider of travel communications products to the North American corporate market.
On April 12, 2011 Polar announced an exclusive distribution agreement with Hasan Associates Limited (Known as "HAL") of Karachi, Pakistan, pursuant to which HAL has been granted exclusive distribution rights for the Polar SIM in Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates. HAL has a strong presence in both countries and will provide full marketing and distribution services to its existing territories. The Pakistani market has seen explosive growth going from approximately 300,000 mobile telephone users in 2000 to over 90 million today. According to TechLahore, the average Pakistani user recycles his phone every year at a cost of approximately US$100 and total cell phone spending exceeds US$2 billion annually. Cell phone usage in the UAE has reached 65% saturation of the population or approximately 2.3 million users with average use estimated between 3 and 4 hours daily.
…Updates to Infrastructure
On April 14, 2011 the firm announced that the company will introduce a 24/7 customer help service to augment its voice, data and SMS center in Moscow. While initially focused on the Russian and Ukrainian markets, the service will be expanded in the future to accommodate broader distribution to former CIS countries in Eastern Europe. Each country will have a direct number to simplify contact with the call center. The decision to introduce the call center facility is designed as a back-up measure to further ensure effective customer service.
On April 19, 2011 Polar announced plans to open a data center in Frankfurt, replacing the Amsterdam data center. Frankfurt will act as a redundant data center in the European and Asian regions for voice, data and SMS messaging and serve as a secondary data center to Polar's global site in Toronto, Canada. The Frankfurt center will operate in partnership with Global Crossing and Neutel Communications. Global Crossing, with 50 locations worldwide, will provide backend services as well as IP-based solutions to Polar Wireless. Neutel Communications is a global traffic carrier offering voice and data transmission over IP. The company provides transmission services to major Tier 1 companies and operates switches in Frankfurt, London and New York. The Frankfurt center will establish a secure server facility for Europe, Eastern Europe and Asia. It will be capable of managing multiple million users simultaneously with interconnections and long distance services.
On April 20th 2011 the company issued a press release to announce it has completed an important part of its system build-out with the successful migration of its Global Data Center to the Bell Canada Data Center, a world class SAS70 and CICA5900 installation backed by a robust, secure and highly reliable network. This includes advanced monitoring systems, leading edge hosting solutions and development of next generation solutions such as cloud computing. This migration to the Bell Canada center will provide Polar Wireless with the long term ability to effectively manage up to 1 million users for their voice, data and SMS requirements. The center will also serve as host to the company's secondary sites such as Moscow and Frankfurt.
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