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TypeSociedad Anónima
IndustryCommunications Services
Founded25 July 1995; 25 years ago (1995-07-25)
HeadquartersMadrid, Spain

Movistar (Spanish pronunciation: [moβisˈtaɾ]) is a major telecommunications brand owned by Telefónica, operating in Spain and in many Latin American countries. It is the largest mobile phone operator in Spain with 22 million customers and 41.58% of market share, where it also markets landline, broadband and pay television (Movistar+).[1] Its principal competitor in Latin America is América Móvil.


The Movistar brand has been in use in Spain since the launch of GSM services in 1995. The name became effective worldwide on April 5, 2005, after Telefónica purchased the BellSouth mobile operations branch in South America. After the purchase of O2 in 2005 by Telefónica, the company announced that the O2 brand would continue to be used in the United Kingdom, Germany and Ireland, as a separate branch with its own board and management structure.

Since 2011, Telefónica has sponsored a UCI ProTeam squad in cycling under the name of Movistar Team, and since 2014, the MotoGP team Movistar Yamaha MotoGP.

Countries where Telefónica operates under the Movistar brand[edit]

Movistar stand at the Mobile World Congress.
VO70 Class yacht Movistar racing in Leg 1 of the 2005 Volvo Ocean Race, in Vigo, Spain.
  • Argentina (formerly Telefónica Unifón and Movicom BellSouth)
  • Bolivia (formerly Telefónica Móvil and BellSouth)
  • Chile (formerly Telefónica Móvil and BellSouth)
  • Colombia (formerly BellSouth, Cocelco, CeluMovil)
  • Costa Rica (formerly Telefónica de Costa Rica, S.A., now operated by Millicom)
  • Ecuador (formerly CelularPower, BellSouth)
  • El Salvador (Formerly Telefónica Móviles or Telefónica MoviStar)
  • Guatemala (formerly Telefónica MoviStar and BellSouth)
  • Mexico (formerly Cedetel, Bajacel, Movitel, Norcel and Pegaso)
  • Nicaragua (formerly BellSouth, now operated by Millicom)
  • Panama (formerly BellSouth, now operated by Millicom)
  • Paraguay (formerly Telefónica Unifón and Movicom BellSouth)
  • Peru (formerly Telefónica Móviles and BellSouth)
  • Spain (formerly Telefónica MoviStar)
  • Uruguay (formerly Telefónica Unifón and Movicom BellSouth)
  • Venezuela (formerly Telcel and Telcel BellSouth)

Countries where Telefónica operates under other brands[edit]

Movistar advertisements[edit]

The 1983 song "Walking on Sunshine" by Katrina and the Waves was used by Telefónica to announce the unification of all its operation brands (Telefónica MoviStar, Bellsouth, Unifon, Telefónica Moviles, Telefónica Movil, Movicom) in Latin America and Spain under the Movistar brand after the takeover of BellSouth's Latin America division.[2] Movistar has also used the New Radicals' hit "You Get What You Give", "Two Princes" by Spin Doctors and currently "Hey, Soul Sister" by Train, and other versions of the song, in audiovisual advertisement.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]