10/14/2009 12:18:00 PM
Tesco to open 100 mobile stores by March 2010
Tesco is ‘on track’ to open 100 mobile stores by March 2010, having already opened a total of 52 ‘Phone Shops’.
The retailer told Mobile it is also rolling out its ‘Phone Guys’ – ‘experts’ to help customers decide which phone is best for them – concept in all stores, following a trial.
A spokeswoman for Tesco Mobile said prepay mobile broadband sales are ‘going well’, after figures showed a 71% increase in sales. She added that activity was ‘particularly good around the September back to school and university time’.
The supermarket began to stock smartphones at the start of October as part of plans to add more ‘top-line’ handsets and widen its range of mobile products and services.
It kick started its smartphone range with two cheap prepay models, the Alcatel Tribe OT-800 and LG GW300, on the Tesco Mobile network.
The retailer is in discussions with manufacturers for eight smartphones, which will be in stock by the end of 2009.
Tesco had already expanded its product range in previous months, with mobile broadband and free laptop offers.
It partnered with Orange and 3 on mobile broadband, and plans to bundle the service with a choice of 30 free laptops. There are also plans to strike deals beyond Orange and 3 in due course.
At the start of this year, the supermarket stepped up its ambitions under CEO Lance Batchelor (pictured), who aims to overtake Argos and challenge Carphone Warehouse on prepay.
There are further plans to have outlets based in all 210 Tesco Extra supermarkets within the next two to three years.