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KUALA LUMPUR (July 27): XOX Media Sdn Bhd has teamed up with a Shanghai-based venture capital and advisory firm to form a partnership with a fifth generation (5G) technology provider in China.

The group today signed a heads of agreement with Jiangsu Sulian Asset Management Co Ltd to link up with an undisclosed Chinese telecommunication firm, to explore a regional 5G mobile network deployment.

The agreement will give Jiangsu Sulian a 10% free carry on profitability from any eventual partnership signed with the Chinese firm, XOX said in a statement today.

“This non-circumvention agreement is designed to secure the introducing party's interest in the 5G project, so that more concrete discussions can take place,” it added.

According to XOX, the group’s local footprint of 2.2 million subscribers and its plans to venture into the regional mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) arena with their One E-Sim deployment represents an interesting proposition for Chinese investors, to capture the regional 5G mobile network market.

While the Chinese form remains unidentified, an indication by Jiangsu Sulian has narrowed the list to one of the top three players in China, namely China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom, it added.

On Saturday (July 25), Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin said the government was still discussing whether to allocate the 700MHz spectrum to a consortium or directly to individual licensees.

He said the 700MHz frequency band will be prioritised to telecommunication companies with existing subscribers and that the decision will be announced “as soon as possible, because the spectrum band is important to maximise usage nationwide”.

Shares of XOX settled 6.5 sen or 36.11% higher at 24.5 sen today, with 1.48 billion units done. This values the firm at RM417.25 million.

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