In the UK, CPW have recently launched our Geek Squad home technology support service in the London area. Carphone hope to expand this over the coming months to cover the whole of the UK with a remote service, and key cities with a home visit service. The vision is that Geek Squad can become a pan-European operation connecting the retail proposition with customers’ increasingly complex technology needs.
In addition, Carphone have been developing plans with Best Buy for the roll-out of two new business ventures. In the US, their five month trial of Best Buy Mobile has delivered encouraging results and they now plan to expand the concept on a commercial scale, with 150-200 stores to be opened over the next 18 months. The majority of these will be "store within a store" concepts in existing Best Buy locations.
Charles Dunstone, Chief Executive Officer, said:
"The needs of our customers and suppliers are changing as the convergence of fixed and wireless technologies gains pace. The opportunities for the Group are tremendously exciting as we begin to pull together our valuable assets – a powerful distribution platform, strong partner relationships, an advanced telecoms network and a growing broadband customer base – to offer an end-to-end wireless solutions service to our customers.
"Our US trial has been successful and we are today announcing a rapid roll-out of the Best Buy Mobile format, allowing us to penetrate the substantial US market in an effective manner with a world class partner.
"In broadband, we are targeting 3.5 million residential customers by March 2010. Provisioning times are falling as the unbundling process becomes more streamlined, and we are confident that our increased investment in customer service will deliver a much improved customer experience. The success of the free broadband proposition and the compelling economics that unbundling delivers have led us to extend our LLU footprint to cover 1,650 exchanges, reaching over 80% of the population.
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