AO World sets out vision to be the largest online-only seller of mobile

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Emmett: focus on retail

AO World has unveiled ambitions to become the largest online-only mobile retailer in the UK after its acquisition of Mobile Phones Direct (MPD).

The online white goods retailer announced earlier this month that it has agreed to buy MPD for £32.5 million with completion of the sale due before March 31, 2019.

AO World plans to use MPD and its ability to offer airtime packages to increase business for AO Mobile, an internal division of the company. The division will target the consumer market first, before focusing on the B2B business that has recently been developed.

AO World COO Danny Emmett said: “To begin with, our focus is very much in retail.

“Our B2B division is still only new but I’m sure they will be desperate to meet with the MPD team and work out where the opportunities lie.

“But retail is our base and where our backbone is, and this acquisition has been made with an eye on winning retail customers.”

13.6m views

Current Mobile Phones Direct CEO Richard Baxendale will head up AO Mobile as managing director and report to AO COO Danny Emmett.

Speaking to Mobile News, Emmett also confirmed that the Mobile Phones Direct and Smart Phone Company brands, which pulled in a combined 13.6 million page views to their websites last year, would not be axed immediately after the acquisition is completed.

Emmett said: “Mobile Phones Direct is a very strong brand in its own right and we intend to keep that going.

“But what we want to do, over time, is establish an AO Mobile proposition that will then be available through AO.com.”

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