Lycamobile believes that data services and multiplay packages will continue to drive the business in 2015. The brand has seen a strong uptake of 4G among its customer base, as well as the continued success of its non-mobile services. Speaking to Mobile, Lycamobile’s CEO Chris Tooley said: ‘It’s been said that MVNOs can’t get access to 4G, but we are proving that this isn’t the case. We’ve been able to make a strong case for consumers to move to 4G. Once you can tell a consumer about an improvement to a product, they expect their supplier to come up with the goods for them. Our 4G value proposition is as good as ever, and as a result we have seen a rapid take-off.
‘We have seen an increase in data traffic with users without compromising our voice or SMS services – we believe that this can be the basis to building a strong data business. The principal innovation in the mobile space in 2014 was the growth in bundled services. We are establishing ourselves in a number of areas, especially in 4G. We are looking to build our 4G footprint and continue to attract new customers to it. More and more data is becoming a driver used by Lycamobile in combination with our regular services.’
Lycamobile’s international services are well known, but as the firm continues to add new countries to its roster, the firm is also trying to encourage its existing customers to use the operator as its sole supplier. In many households the Lycamobile contract exists alongside a domestic one, and the network is hoping to convince customers to use their Lycamobile phone for all their calls. It’s an area that Chris Tooley can see developing: ‘We believe that by offering services such as 4G we’re more likely to encourage customers to use Lycamobile as their sole provider. Many of our customers own two handsets and have two contracts, with one device used to call abroad and the other for domestic use. We’re trying to change that so that customers use Lycamobile as their only network.
'2015 is set to be a pretty interesting year; we are looking to be holding and consolidating our existing footprint, but also expanding into new MVNO territories such as North Africa. We are targeting places where they send a lot of traffic to destination countries.’
The service expansion
The UK market has been dominated by discussions about quadplay in recent months, and it seems as if every operator has to face the issue of multiplay in some way as a result. Lycamobile already offers services outside the mobile space with Lycafly and Lycamoney. If the firm does enter the quadplay arena, the emphasis will be on providing a service that complements what the brand already offers, as Chris Tooley, explains: ‘In terms of quadplay, our brand is extending into other areas if and when the opportunity arises. We have Lycafly and Lycamoney because the services are directly complementary to what we already offer. We are looking at broadband and fixed line along with a number of other services, but there are no immediate plans.
'If and when we do enter this space it will be with a clear understanding of the role our customer base want us to play – we’ll be offering something that’s not on the BT or Sky package. For example programmes that appeal to the different immigrant communities we already serve.'