Vodafone expands Partner markets to drive international growth

Vodafone today marked the tenth anniversary of its Partner Markets division by unveiling plans to further expand its international presence through mobile operator relationships across the widest possible geographic footprint.

In the last six months alone, Vodafone has established or renewed agreements with 12 companies including SFR and members of the Conexus Mobile Alliance in the Asia-Pacific region. Vodafone Partner Markets now intends to further expand into Asia and South America in 2012 and beyond to meet the growing demand among multinational businesses for sophisticated voice and data communications solutions as well as advanced roaming services.

Separately, Vodafone also announced that its partner market relationship with SFR in France is fully operational and unveiled a new strategic partnership with Pacific Mobile Telecom of French Polynesia, extending the Vodafone brand to one of the most remote territories in the Asia-Pacific region.

Vodafone Partner Markets CEO Ravinder Takkar said: “Over the past ten years, Vodafone has entered into partnerships with mobile operators in more than 40 markets. These strategic relationships are good for partners and good for customers. They offer the best of Vodafone’s scale and global expertise combined with our partners’ market knowledge and experience. Our Partner Markets division has grown rapidly in recent years, and we look forward to further expansion into emerging markets.”

Vodafone and SFR entered into a Partner Market agreement in June 2011 after the sale of Vodafone’s 44% stake in SFR to Vivendi. The two companies will also jointly source and deploy a full range of products and services targeted at enterprise markets.

SFR Business Team CEO Pierre Barnabé said: “This is the extension of the long-standing partnership with Vodafone. Together, we will manage the global requirements of French multinational companies at a time when effective communications are becoming ever more important in determining business success.”

Tahiti-based Pacific Mobile Telecom is a new start-up operator which will now adopt the Vodafone global brand as it establishes a new 3G network in French Polynesia – a market which until now has had only one incumbent telecommunications company.

Pacific Mobile Telecom President Albert Moux said: “With dedicated support from Vodafone, we plan an aggressive network rollout and intend to be fully operational within one year. As the in-country challenger, we believe that rapid growth can be achieved with a high-quality network, attractive retail offers and excellent products and services, all underpinned by the Vodafone brand.”

Vodafone Partner Markets are a series of strategic alliances between Vodafone Group and local mobile network operators which Vodafone does not own. The agreements offer Vodafone customers simple and reliable connectivity when roaming internationally, with consistent and familiar access to Vodafone services worldwide. Partner Markets agreements vary from full Vodafone branding arrangements under licence through to product branding, roaming and service resale agreements.