9/10/2008 12:40:00 PM
Tesco Mobile is close to hitting two million subscribers
Tesco’s own-brand mobile service is weeks away from hitting two million subscribers, Mobile understands.
The MVNO will hit the two-million mark in the coming weeks, which comes as the company appointed a new CEO, Lance Batchelor, to replace Andy Dewhurst. Dewhurst has been in the role since the joint venture between Tesco and O2 was formed in June 2003.
Batchelor steps up from UK marketing director at Tesco, covering the supermarket’s UK business. He was first appointed in the marketing role in July 2007, after leaving his group marketing job at Vodafone.
Batchelor joins Tesco Mobile just as the non-specialist market becomes fiercer than ever, with Tesco ringing the changes to ensure it stays ahead in an increasingly competitive market. Carphone Warehouse and Argos are competing for the top position in the prepay market with around a 20% share each, with Tesco slightly behind.
Tesco recently rebranded its MVNO Tesco Mobile and cut the rates of its prepay tariff. One of Tesco Mobile’s main rivals, Asda Mobile, unveiled new tariffs on 1 September which dropped call prices to a flat rate of 8p per minute and texts to a flat rate of 4p per text.
Tesco said Batchelor’s appointment is part of a strategy to grow its overall share in markets including financial services, telecoms and internet/home shopping. Tesco hopes this growth will help deliver its aim of £1bn in annual profits – more than double its current levels of just under £400m.
Batchelor said: ‘I am excited to come on board at such a promising time for Tesco Telecoms. Not only are we growing our store and online presence, but our commitment to value offerings is becoming increasingly relevant as consumers are demanding a better deal.’
Asda Mobile vs Tesco Mobile
Asda Mobile appears significantly cheaper for lower-spending customers, while Tesco Mobile provides more minutes and texts for customers who spend over £15 per month.
Calls: 8p per minute
Texts: 4p per minute
‘Only heavy users would ever spend £15 on Asda mobile. The vast majority of customers will save money, week in, week out with Asda mobile. Asda isn’t about giving customers more minutes they don’t need, it’s about saving customers money.’
Calls: 20p per minute (10p for five favourite numbers)
Texts: 10p per minute (5p for five favourite numbers)
500 free texts or 150 free minutes when users top-up £15 per month
‘We know it is the overall value of the package, not just the call and text rate that customers look at when deciding which provider to choose. Our plan helps customers get the most out of their monthly top-up. We’re confident we deliver unbeatable all-round value.’