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VAS TOP 10: #4 Spice―Spicing Up the Space

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VoicenData Bureau
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Spice Digital, previously known as Cellebrum Technologies, is a developer of mobile value added services (MVAS) and internet products, services, and applications with headquarters at Parwanoo in Himachal Pradesh, India. It offers innovative solutions to telecom operators, enterprises, and government agencies using different mobile connectivity medium of voice, IVR, SMS, USSD, WAP, 3G, and mobile applications. It has partnership with most of the telecom service providers like airtel, Vodafone, Idea, BPL, BSNL, Reliance, MTNL, and other corporates.

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Spice Digital is a part of Spice Global, a US $2 bn conglomerate with diversified interests led by Dr BK Modi. The company offers services to telecom operators, enterprises, and the Government, using different mobile connectivity medium of voice, WAP, 3G, mobile applications etc.

It has not been a cakewalk to manage a 30-year-old company renowned for its joint ventures with global leaders like Alcatel-Lucent, Telstra, Xerox, and Olivetti among many others. Known by many names like BK Modi Group to Modi Corporation to Mcorp Global, the company has now been transformed to S Mobility, and has seen many ups and downs in the last three decades.

In 2000, the company was incorporated with a staff of 13. In July 2006, it invested `100 crore to soup up its technology and expand its product line. Also, it set up a `50 crore incubation fund for start-up ventures. In 2006, the company doubled its employee strength, taking its headcount to 400 by the year end. In 2007, it revamped its operations to enhance its R&D capabilities.

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In 2009, the company changed its brand identity as Spice Digital from Cellebrum Technologies. The new VAS firm has forged technological partnerships with HP, Intel, Microsoft, Dialogic, Nuance, and IBM for its technological needs. It also became the first MVAS company in India to offer 3G applications in collaboration with MTNL.

Spice Digital has acquired two leading International Mobile VAS Companies in order to expand their product line. In November 2010, Spice Mobility announced that its subsidiary Spice Digital has entered into an agreement to acquire, directly or through its subsidiary, 100% of the issued share capital of BeoWorld. BeoWorld was incorporated in Malaysia and it provides an open platform and marketplace to promote and monetize third party application development and content for mobile devices on MediaTek (MTK) and Android platforms. In March 2011, they entered the Indonesian mobile handset market via a $175 mn acquisition of the Cellular Business and the 'Nexian' brand of Affinity Group Indonesia, one of the largest players in Indonesimms of Indonesia. As recent as in July this year, Taiwan's MediaTek, a designer of chips used in mobile phones, bought a 10% stake in Spice Digital, for $20 mn. The acquisition by MediaTek is expected to help the Taiwanese company in getting access to various geographies where Spice Digital has business interests.

Recently, the company entered into Kingdom of Cambodia with the launch of two of its most successful services-mobile radio and voice chat. This is yet another successful venture into the international space by Spice Digital. With close to 25 mobile networks across the globe and an unbeatable presence in Saarc, APAC, and MEA markets; Spice Digital's foray into the Kingdom of Cambodia now establishes it as the future Mobile Internet Organization. For both, mobile radio and voice chat services, Spice Digital has partnered Hang Meas, Cambodia's fastest growing media production company for content development, in association with Metfone Viettel, the leading telecom operator in Cambodia.

Spice Digital has taken membership of premier associations like GSMA and 160characters. Through these forums, Spice Digital works with others in the domain on issues like deciding industry standards, laws and regulations, and others.

The company has launched a new mobile off-deck portal, Spice Gang, that allows users to access various infotainment, and entertainment services.

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