Vodafone UK claims early momentum in chase for new £14bn unified communications market
Vodafone wants 175,000 OneNet customers by 2015, according to dealers in attendance at working sessions for Vodafone’s twin unified communications product last week.
According to delegates at the event, Vodafone instructed dealers OneNet sales have surpassed 1,000 customers and 10,000 seats in the UK SME market since its launch in September 2009.
However, its OneNet solution has only been available for selected third-party re-sale since the middle of last year.
Vodafone had 10 dealer partners selling OneNet at Christmas, and claimed a 10-fold increase in sales in the past quarter.
A further 40 dealers have passed accreditation to sell the products since the turn of the year.
It is to spend £1.5 million through February on marketing its OneNet solutions to SMEs.
Vodafone refused to comment on the figures, nor on sales performance or targets for its OneNet and OneNet Express products, pitched to SME and SOHO businesses respectively.
However UK enterprise marketing director Peter Boucher told Mobile News: “It is a challenging journey but the size of the prize makes it worthwhile. We are moving from a £4 billion mobile [enterprise] market into a £14 billion communications market, covering mobile, fixed line and infrastructure.
“It is an opportunity for us to grow share and value for shareholders. There are a lot of white spaces. But there is no free lunch; the industry has to move; there has to be a transformation of systems, channels and people.”
One dealer in attendance at the conference last week remarked: “It’s all about OneNet and OneNet Express; there is no plan B.”
Another said: “Vodafone reckons it has stopped the rot, and is winning substantial business from Orange and no longer losing customers to O2 as it was a couple of years ago.”
Vodafone has more than a million customers signed up to OneNet across Europe. It said Vodafone Spain and Vodafone Portugal are signing 50,000 new users to OneNet each month.
Vodafone is planning to rebrand Vodafone Enterprise to Vodafone Business Services, Mobile News understands.
Boucher said of the cultural and professional shift required by the industry to sell unified communications: “Some dealers are right on to it, ahead of us even. They are Microsoft accredited and used to selling fixed line, and whatever else. So some of them are pulling us along, and helping us. But the vast majority have got to make that leap.”