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Norwegian Opera Software enters Chinese market

Opera Software, maker of the world’s most popular mobile web browsers, and Telling Telecom Development Co., a premier mobile phone distributor in China, today announced that they have reached an agreement to establish a joint venture to develop a customized mobile browser for the Chinese market, based on Opera’s technology.

The joint venture will enable Opera and Telling Telecom to accelerate their growth in users in the Chinese market by combining proven browser technology from Opera with local content, operations and Telling’s unparalleled distribution network within China.

The registered capital of the joint venture will be 135 million RMB. Through an investment over three years, Opera will own up to 40% of the joint venture company. Opera is guaranteed a minimum amount of revenue from the joint venture, corresponding to Opera’s initial investment.

Opera Software produces two mobile browsers, Opera Mini and Opera Mobile. Together, more than 100 million people use these browsers each month. Telling Telecom Development Co, a subsidiary of Telling Telecom Holding Co., has more than 9,000 employees and an 18% market share of Chinese mobile-phone distribution industry.

Mr. Huang Shaowen, CEO of Telling Telecom, says: “As a leading mobile phone distributor in China, Telling Telecom has a proud achievement of shipping more than 30 million mobile phones every year. Now, the establishment of a joint venture with Opera will create a new stage for Telling Telecom to keep pushing our mobile Internet strategy of Put Your Dream Into Pocket.”

He states that, for this strategic cooperation, Telling Telecom will use all its resources, including 116 branch offices from 25 subsidiaries, which control more than 40,000 retailing outlets across the country, to put the mobile browser into every mobile phone. “The combining of Telling’s overwhelming mobile-phone distribution channel and Opera’s superior product for mobile Internet will bring mobile Internet users with a wonderful and easy browsing experience,” he says. “This will be a surprise to the mobile Internet industry. Together, we will make a strong impact to the current industry structure.”

“China represents the largest mobile web opportunity on the planet,” said Lars Boilesen, CEO, Opera Software. “To reach the vast majority of that market, we are creating an entirely new product that suits the needs of Chinese consumers. The Opera Mini browser provides the technical backbone, while Telling Telecom Development Co provides a distribution network that can get a product in the hands of hundreds of millions of consumers. Together, we expect great success in China, which can be achieved only by collaborating with an industry leader such as Telling Telecom Development Co.”

“This marks an important step of Opera’s strategy in China. Chinese consumers are already used to having the best mobile experience with browsers like Opera Mini,” said Song Lin, China Country Manager, Opera. “With a major partner, we’ll largely expand our presence in China to create a product that reflects the needs and desires specifically of Chinese consumers. We look forward to collaborating with Telling Telecom Development Co. to redefine the mobile Web in China.”

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