UK mobile giant Vodafone Group has announced that it has agreed to form a strategic partnership with the Conexus Mobile Alliance, which the former says will ‘significantly expand [its] partner market presence in Asia and provide Conexus member customers with greater support in Vodafone’s global footprint’. The Newbury-based group said that it plans to work with as many of the members of Conexus as possible to complement its own regional operations in India, Australia, Fiji and New Zealand and its existing partners in Malaysia (Celcom) and Sri Lanka (Dialog), although it noted that the only Conexus country in which it would not seek an alliance is India, where it operates via Vodafone Essar. Over time, Vodafone notes, the agreement will include partnerships with: FarEasTone (Taiwan); Hutchison Telecom (Hong Kong); NTT DOCOMO (Japan); Smart Communications (the Philippines); StarHub (Singapore); and True Move (Thailand). Further, Vodafone and Conexus will also look to expand partnerships with remaining Conexus members, such as KT Corp in South Korea, to further enhance coverage.
Under the terms of the partnership agreement, in those countries where Vodafone already has a current partner market agreement in place, any new agreement with a Conexus member will take effect once the existing contract had expired. Conexus members meanwhile will be able to use the Vodafone brand, gain access to Vodafone’s devices and services in their home markets and become the preferred partner of Vodafone in respect of the agreed areas of cooperation. The arrangement, it is claimed, will enhance both Conexus members’ and Vodafone’s ability to meet growing demand among multinational businesses for sophisticated voice and data communications solutions as well as advanced roaming services within and outside of Asia.
Morten Lundal, Vodafone’s Group Chief Commercial Officer, said of the development: ‘The value to Vodafone of collaborating with Conexus will be significant given the growing importance of Asia to our enterprise customers. These agreements will strengthen and deepen the benefits to our customers operating in these large and dynamic markets.’ Conexus chairman Andrew Kwok meanwhile noted: ‘The unprecedented partnership between Conexus and Vodafone is a realisation of Conexus’ growth strategy. We believe that it has marked the world’s first collaboration between one of Asia’s largest mobile alliances and one of the world’s largest mobile communities. The partnership is of strong strategic value to the Alliance. It will not only enable us to further extend our global reach but also increase our overall competitiveness especially in coping with diverse global customer requirements. The partnership showcases our common vision to provide our combined global mobile customer base of over 600 million customers with preferential roaming services and unique value propositions for corporate customers. It also offers a good opportunity for Conexus members to extend their business relationships to more than 40 existing partners of Vodafone.’