Oberthur's LatAm MultiSIM footprint grows

Friday, October 10, 2014

An all-in-one cell phone chip developed by French digital security firm Oberthur Technologies is being used in four LatAm countries, the firm's regional VP, Luis Cohen, told BNamericas.

He said several carriers offer the product, known as MultiSIM, and more are expected to come on board this year.

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Brazil's Oi is the only carrier to date in the region to report sales of Oberthur's card, also known as a "triple-cut" chip. It can be adjusted in size to be used as a normal, micro or nano variant in order to fit different handsets.

Oi sells the card at the same price as its other chips, 10 reais (US$4.05). They are currently only available to users signed up to Oi's Galera prepaid plans in the cities of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo.

Oberthur is also providing its chip to "more than one large carrier" operating in Peru, Chile and Colombia. Cohen did not name the telco, which is expected to be joined by others before end-year.

In Latin America, all cards are manufactured at the company's factory in the Brazilian city of Cotia in São Paulo state. The firm has regional headquarters in São Paulo city and employs 600 people in the country.

Cohen said: "The first pilots of this technology began to be carried out worldwide in the second half of last year. Oberthur's first shipments started in November."

Oberthur has so far sold over 1mn multiSIM cards to operators in the four LatAm markets it currently serves. Globally, over 8mn cards have reportedly been shipped to more than 60 customers.

Oberthur's main market rival is Dutch firm Gemalto. Cohen is a former Gemalto executive.