Virgin Media, BT agree new mobile deal
January 9, 2017
Virgin Media and BT have announced a new five year Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) agreement. Under the new deal, EE, a BT Group company, will provide wholesale mobile network services to Virgin Media, a subsidiary of Liberty Global, the world’s largest international TV and broadband company.
This gives Virgin Media increased flexibility to grow its Virgin Mobile operation faster and provide new, innovative services to its customers.
The full MVNO agreement, which covers voice and data services, replaces an existing MVNO wholesale agreement between the two companies and extends its exclusivity to 2021.
Peter Kelly, Managing Director of Virgin Mobile, said: “This winning combination with EE will give Virgin Mobile even more control and firepower to deliver innovative services to the UK mobile market. Virgin Mobile customers want fast speeds, flexibility and plans packed full of data – we’re going to continue to deliver.”
Gerry McQuade, CEO of Wholesale and Ventures, BT, said: “This has proven a successful relationship for both parties for many years and, as we enter a period of further technological change in the mobile market, we are very pleased to renew and extend our 17 year old relationship. As the largest wholesale provider of telecommunications services in Europe, BT values the economy of scale that Virgin Media brings to our network.”
Virgin Mobile was the world’s first virtual mobile operator when it launched in 1999. It is one of the largest MVNOs in the UK with 3 million subscribers. Instead of owning mobile infrastructure, Virgin Mobile uses infrastructure provided on a wholesale basis by network operator EE.
In November 2016 Virgin Mobile launched fast 4G in the UK. It combined this with innovative new services that give customers free messaging on WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger and the ability to “rollover” unused data.
Wholesale and Ventures is a BT business that provides network products and services to more than 1,400 communication providers operating in the UK.