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Olive and Vodafone form exclusive B2B partnership

Paul Withers
May 19, 2014

Vodafone platinum partner gains full access to the operator’s portfolio of products and services and will work with it to design and build ‘complex multi-product’ solutions

Olive Communications has entered into an exclusive agreement with Vodafone that will see the two companies working in partnership to help drive sales of the operator’s convergence portfolio.

The joint initiative, which began this month, is the first of its kind in the UK and is part of Vodafone’s strategy to gain traction in the fixed line and IT market, following its £1 billion acquisition of Cable & Wireless Worldwide in April 2013.

Olive, a leading Vodafone Platinum Partner with more than 110,000 mobile connections on its base, will gain full access to the network’s portfolio of products and services across mobile, fixed telephony and data and cloud-based applications and services.

The dealer will also now work in direct partnership with the operator’s direct sales and converged solutions team to design and build “complex multi-product” solutions, to be offered in the enterprise market.

Olive chief executive Martin Flick (pictured) labelled the agreement between the two companies “a blueprint” for the future.

Flick said: “Our relationship with Vodafone and the support they have provided us with has already helped drive our growth plans. This extra support now takes us to the next level.

“There is a huge amount of synergy in the strategy of the two organisations which has proved a great foundation to developing the relationship.”

Vodafone head of partner services Rob Mukerjee said Olive had “really embraced” Vodafone’s strategy in the convergence space, leading to the pair forging a more strategic partnership.

Olive has also opened a new 10,000 square foot office in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, with plans to open two more offices in the next three months and increase staff count by almost 50 per cent this year, to  230.

The new premises, which will be in addition to its headquarters in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, acts as a fully configured unified comms contact centre with IP voice and multi-channel social media capabilities that will be linked to all other offices. It also features a product demonstration area for customers.

Olive will also open new offices in Southampton and Leeds over the next three months. New staff will be focused across all aspects of the company’s sales and account management operations.

The latest expansion plans follow Olive’s announcement last month that it is investing more than £100,000 on its biggest staff training programme in its 11-year history.

The launch of Olive Academy will see all staff attend a training programme by skills development company Space2 over the next 12 months, where they will attend workshops as well as one-on-one and telephone sessions to ensure the teaching is put into practice.

Flick added: “Our expansion plans are in line with our long-term business strategy and give us capacity to accommodate multi product sales teams and further acquisitions.”

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