Colao denies TalkTalk claims that Vodafone will exit MVNO market

Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao

Vodafone Group CEO said it was TalkTalk’s decision to end MVNO agreement with operator blaming “difference in policies”

Vodafone Group CEO Vittorio Colao has denied claims that the UK arm of the operator is set to exit the MVNO wholesale space.

Speaking on a conference call following Vodafone’s Q1 financial results, Colao dismissed claims made by TalkTalk in a submission to the Competition and Markets Authority that the operator plans to stop using their network to support MVNOs.

TalkTalk had accused Vodafone of ending their agreement in November, a move which prompted the broadband provider to switch to O2.

It had also claimed Vodafone had served notice to Sainsbury’s that it plans to end its MVNO contract, causing Vodafone to submit its own clarification to the CMA.

Hitting back, Colao said: “TalkTalk are facing challenges of their own. We’re not exiting the market, we are working with partners when the partners reflect our own commercial policies and visions.

“We have MVNOs in a number of markets as well as here. If TalkTalk has different policies that do not put value on quality and the performance of the Vodafone network, then they can go elsewhere.

“It is not a strategic decision nor specifically a decision against them – it is their own commercial choice to play a game in the low end of the market.

“It seems to me that they are focussing on part of the market that is less quality sensitive, less sophisticated but it was their choice.”