Monday, March 05, 2007

Orange's Georges Penalver comments on unik

In comments made at 3GSM in Barcelona, Orange confirmed that there were more than 69,000 unik handsets sold in France in the last three months of 2006. According to Georges Penalver, senior executive marketing vice president with Orange Group, 15% of new customers joining Orange were doing so to get the unik service. A tremendous recognition of the value of the service.

Penalver confirmed three more handsets are joining the unik service plan and that Orange in France is forecasting 1m UMA units in 2007. Commercial launches for Spain and the UK are planned for the first half of 2007.

“Unik brings simplicity and cheaper access to basic services, like voice,” Penalver said. “It provides a better customer experience for data access, better indoor coverage, and it off-loads the mobile network.”

More interesting, according to Penalver, unik hasn’t cut into existing mobile revenues. “The positive parts are the price of the unik option and the retention effect and ARPU uplife. Customers pay less to get the same service.”

It is important to note that Orange introduced an unlimited international call tariff for unik business users in January, 2007. The “unik for professionals” tariff covers all calls made over UMA/Wi-Fi to landlines in Europe, the US and Canada for a flat fee of €15.88/month, available only in France.

Continuing, Penalver said that bundled services are an important focus for Orange. Through an internal study, Orange determined that by 2008, 63% of European households would have both broadband and mobile services, of which two thirds would take a bundled service from a single operator. That works out to 42% of European households looking for a combined mobile/broadband provider.

It’s clear that unik and UMA continue to be a key and central part of Orange’s strategy throughout Europe.

No comments: