O2 UK has announced that it is to partner once again with Manx Telecom, this time in a new MVNO deal to target the international traveller market.
The multi million pound agreement will also see the Isle of Man operator acting as an aggregator (MVNA), giving niche MVNO companies access to the O2 network.
Manx Telecom will link with O2 to provide services for international customers travelling to the UK for short breaks. In a move designed to tap into the lucrative tourist market, visitors to the UK will be able to purchase a pre-paid SIM that will offer them competitive in-country rates.
The new product will compliment a similar MVNO arrangement that Manx Telecom already deploys in America, giving international travellers a unique in-country offering in both America and the UK.
This new deal is the third strategic MVNO partnership O2 has announced in the last 12 months.
O2 business sales director, Ben Dowd, said: “We were always looking forward to continuing our relationship with Manx Telecom, and this deal opens up new opportunities for us. In the last 12 months alone, we’ve worked hard to make sure we have exactly the right mix of partners to grow our share and more importantly our revenue in the MVNO market. O2 is home to two of the largest players, and the MVNA capability with Manx Telecom now gives us the opportunity to offer smaller companies access to the O2 network.”
Manx Telecom’s head of business development, Tom Meageen, said: “Over recent years, we’ve developed an excellent portfolio of mobile products, which we market to international travellers. In 2009, we launched a very successful MVNO in the USA, and our partnership with O2 will enable us to further strengthen our market position by adding one of the leading networks in the UK to our portfolio.”
Dowd continued: “It’s important that we have aggregator capabilities, and this deal with Manx Telecom offers this opportunity, but our intention is not to become a mass MVNO house. O2 is the obvious home for MVNOs that want to become really successful, and we’re taking our time to build strong relationships with some of the largest and most interesting parties.”
Manx Telecom was part of the Telefónica group until June this year when it was announced that the company had been acquired by CPS Partners, a specialist international telecommunications management company and HgCapital, a leading European private equity investor, which invests mainly in the telecoms, media, technology and services sectors.
Telefónica sold Manx Telecom to concentrate more on its largest markets and increase its focus and investment in its key brands O2 and Movistar. At the time of the sale in June, Telefónica made it clear that it would look for opportunities to work again with Manx Telecom in the future.
Chris Hall, managing director of Manx Telecom, concluded: “We have a number of unique capabilities, which stem from our history, our location, and our efforts in developing the business in recent years. Now, we intend to expand our involvement into those areas where we believe we have competitive advantage and the wholesale side of the market is potentially a very attractive area for us.”