Blyk has confirmed it is stopping its ad-funded UK MVNO on August 26 to run as a straight Orange customer proposition.
The move follows Blyk’s decision to stop its Dutch MVNO to run as an ad-funded proposition in the Vodafone Netherlands portfolio. It is to do the same in its other European and Asian operating markets.
Blyk was set up in 2007 and has offered customers a free airtime credit allowance in exchange for taking targeted advertising on their mobile phones. It has so far signed 200,000 customers in the UK.
Orange vice president of wholesale business development and partnerships Marc Overton (pictured right) confirmed the network would continue to use Blyk’sexpertise but would be launching its own ad-funded Orange tariff before the current MVNO service ends.
Overton said: “Orange has enjoyed a close working relationship with Blyk since it first entered the market in 2007. It is a progressive, innovative, and exciting company and one which matches a proven capability with Orange’s ambition to grow its media business
“Integrating Blyk’s capabilities into our own will allow Orange customers access to great brand offers, benefits and promotions in a timely fashion which are specifically tailored and relevant to them.
”To date mobile advertising has been hidden behind the internet browser. This is mobile push marketing. It’s push activated and designed to have a conversation with the customer, build better profiles on them and give them what they want and when they want it.”
Blyk co-founder and chief Pekka Ala-Pietilä (pictured left) added: “For Blyk, the MVNO enabled us to build an optimal user experience for young people while at the same time providing an engaged audience, accountability and overall media effectiveness for advertisers.
“The Blyk media model is now proven and we are accelerating Blyk’s growth through operator partnerships.
“We’ve had an excellent relationship with Orange UK in our capacity as an MVNO and our move to operator partnering naturally served to propel the evolution of this relationship. We see this as a major building block for Blyk’s international expansion and continued growth.”