5G rollout continues at pace with Vodafone in UK; Samsung, US
Despite the fact that the phones in most people’s pockets don’t have 5G capabilities, the next generation wireless communications technology is big business.
With 2020 expected to be the year 5G phones go mainstream, companies across the world are working to expand coverage and ensure customers can actually make the most of their shiny new phones.
In the UK, for instance, British telecommunications conglomerate Vodafone has brought 5G to Edinburgh, Leeds and towns in and around Greater Manchester. Including roaming locations, Vodafone says its users now have access to 5G in over 100 locations in the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain and the Republic of Ireland.
Vodafone UK Chief Executive Officer Nick Jeffery said: “We have started the new year as we mean to go on. We now offer 5G in double the number of places than our nearest rival and we have significantly boosted the capacity of our network. It is ready for the arrival in 2020 of some great new 5G handsets and the next big software release bringing ultra-low latency. Together, these will push 5G to the next level.”
In the same vein, in the United States Samsung Electronics has announced the acquisition of a Virginian telecommunications company and its 5G solutions.
The acquisition of TeleWorld Solutions was said by Samsung to address “the need for end-to-end support” as 5G increases demand for the design and deployment of networks.
“The acquisition of TWS will enable us to meet mobile carriers’ growing needs for improving their 4G and 5G networks, and eventually create new opportunities to enhance our service capabilities to our customers,” said Paul Kyungwhoon Cheun, Executive Vice President and Head of Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “Samsung will continue to drive innovation in communications technology while providing optimization services for network deployments that accelerate U.S. 5G network expansion.”
Bukalapak raises $1.5bn in record Singapore IPO, say sources
Bukalapak, currently the fourth largest Indonesian ecommerce company, is said to have raised $1.5 billion in the first IPO by an Indonesian tech unicorn.
Three unidentified, but likely reliable, sources told Reuters the order books for Bukalapak’s IPO were covered by multiples, with one source claiming the issue attracted more than $6 billion in demand despite being listed at the top of its indicated price range.
Bukalapak's 50x growth
Bukalapak was looking to raise just $300 million just a few months ago. The figure grew to $800 million before rising to $1.5 billion as investors jockeyed for a piece of the company.
Covid-19 has had a positive impact on many ecommerce operators, and Bukalapak also has strong investment lines via Singapore sovereign investor GIC and Microsoft, among others. The company focuses on micro, small and medium-sized enterprises.
Indonesia is Southeast Asia’s biggest economy.
Indonesia’s four biggest ecommerce companies
Tokopedia is an Indonesian technology company specializing in e-commerce. It was founded in 2009 by William Tanuwijaya and Leontinus Alpha Edison.
Shopee was first launched in Singapore in 2015, and later expanded its reach to Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines, Brazil, Mexico, Chile, and Colombia.
Lazada is a Singaporean multinational technology company which focuses mainly on e-commerce. Founded by Maximilian Bittner with the backing of Rocket Internet in 2012, it is currently owned by the Alibaba Group after its acquisition in 2016.
Bukalapak is an Indonesian e-commerce company. It was founded in 2010 as an online marketplace to enable small and medium enterprises go online and has expanded to support smaller traditional family owned businesses.