Analyst Event Reprise

By Charles Brett

Vodafone is an exception as a telco. It has a heritage in mobile communications, albeit most commonly associated with consumer mobile. Yet, from the outside, it has increasingly appeared over recent years to be acquiring the slow, stodgy habits of conventional, and primarily fixed-line, telcos, whose managements still seem to think they are in the business of running networks, rather than satisfying customers. At its 2013 Analyst Event, in early November, Vodafone put any such thoughts to bed; at least where businesses are concerned.

The last 18 months has been busy for Vodafone. It has:

  • acquired Cable & Wireless Worldwide (CWW) and made progress in rationalizing and exploiting its purchase
  • negotiated a $130bn divorce from Verizon (along with a handsome amount of increased investment; an additional £7bn or so, over the next 2 years)
  • obtained approval to acquire Kabel Deutschland, which, as with CWW, brings fixed line capabilities and thus the potential to make triple, or even quadruple-play services available in Germany
  • established Vodafone Group Enterprise (VGE); a unit specifically focused on supplying businesses with the global communications that they need – whether via mobile, fixed or satellite networks and across cloud computing/data hosting, M2M, and others

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