The T-Mobile and Orange brands will run indefinitely with each keeping an individual identity, Everything Everywhere CEO Tom Alexander told Mobile in an exclusive interview this week.
He said: ‘We have no plans to change the brands. We have two brands that are household names and icons. Customers are members of the club.
‘Multimedia is important to both, and there are multimedia devices coming thick and fast. The mass market is about to explode. Everybody will want to do more than voice and text.’
The brands will differentiate in their handset portfolios and will attempt to compete while avoiding duplication.
However, Alexander stressed that T-Mobile would not be positioned as the ‘value brand’.
He said: ‘T-Mobile is a brand for the people and the challenger brand. A lot of people get it wrong - T-Mobile has the highest contract ARPU in the country – it’s not low cost, it will be different brands. We have something called “smart compete”. Both brands will compete and we want to exaggerate the personality of both.’
Alexander said no jobs will go in retail: ‘Front line jobs in call centres and shops will be key, as we will have more customers and we’ll need more people to support them.’
Meanwhile, T-Mobile and Orange may align their business brands under one name, as they seek to overtake Vodafone and O2 in the area.
A number of names had been thrown into the mix prior to the ‘Everything Everywhere’ decision, including ‘dot dot dot’ and Bright Cloud’.
Orange and T-Mobile will now begin to integrate their networks, with joint roaming available later this year. Orange will also join T-Mobile and 3’s network deal, MBNL.
Alexander said: ‘At the end of the day we will be a big network – Orange, T-Mobile, 3 and Virgin Mobile will share a common infrastructure.’
He added that sharing the network would make huge savings in both costs and the environment.
Official merger date:
1 July. The two companies will run separately until then.
Second half of 2010: Customers start to see changes.
2011: Everything Everywhere to evolve further. Terms and conditions of employment to be brought together.
What will happen?
• joint network
• management structure shuffle (see pages 1 and 5)
• new name: ‘Everything Everywhere’
• retail expansion
plans for new markets, with a change in broadband delivery, and new assault on business
What won’t happen
• stores won’t be closed, retail jobs won’t be cut
• no T-Mobile value brand
• no joint branding