10/28/2009 11:16:00 AM
O2/Vodafone network share fully operational
Cornerstone, the company managing the O2 and Vodafone network share, is now fully operational with over 100 sites live or under construction.
In March, O2 and Vodafone announced a deal to share network assets across Europe, which was exclusively revealed by Mobile.
O2 parent Telefónica and Vodafone will use the agreement, which is expected to save ‘hundreds of millions of pounds’ over the next 10 years, to aid the roll out of their networks.
In the UK, both companies will focus on the joint build of new sites and consolidation of existing 2G and 3G sites.
In the latest move, Cornerstone is considering putting a tender out for the maintenance of the two networks’ sites, to take place in January, Mobile understands.
Vodafone’s sites are currently managed by Mono and Tyco, while O2’s are managed by Clark Telecom and Cellular Systems Limited.
An O2 spokeswoman said: ‘Now that the Cornerstone team is in place, we are working to review our processes and procedures to ensure we are operating efficiently. We continually review our suppliers, but it is far too early to speculate on a new tender at this stage.’
In April, it emerged that O2’s technology team was at risk from job cuts ?after Cornerstone was formed to manage the site share programme for the ?two operators.
O2 chief technology officer Derek McManus had internally described the network share deal as part of plans to make the operator 50% more efficient, with a 50% reduction in costs and a 50% reduction in the time it ?will take to roll out the network.
O2 said there are approximately 200 people in the Cornerstone team with ‘only a very small number of vacancies still to fill’, in mainly support roles.
The spokeswoman added: ‘We are very pleased with the management team and the skill sets we now have in the joint organisation.’