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Vodafone and 3 to merge

News has reached us from the colonies that Hutchinson and Vodafone in Australia are set to merge. Will this set a precedent for pairing up elsewhere in the world?

In a public statement issued on Hutchinson Whampoa’s website those two telecoms giants announced their intentions of merging, in an equal 50:50 joint venture. When this takes place, the enterprise will henceforth be trading solely under the ‘3’ brand name.

Vodafone’s website was absent of any such news, not surprising when the header of the operation is now Hutchinson. Although it could come across to some as they were acting like a jilted lover too close to Valentine’s Day, by their silence.

Vodafone Australia Limited and Hutchinson 3G Australia Pty, will be run under the new name of VHA Pty Limited. It will still carry on using the Vodafone brand name, building on the success of the business already in place. Whilst at the same time adopting a new lease of life, with the joint foundations of bringing both companies together.

They now have 6 million customers all together, with ongoing investments VHA Pty is aiming to bring 3G coverage to 95% of Australia. As it stands, only 63% currently have that level of 3G access.

More can be read on the finer points of the deal here, in a pdf document.

Could this deal lead the way to other mergers elsewhere for the two companies?

Are we set to see these two come together in the UK?

We’ve heard no such rumours in blighty, although if we were twittering about it now it would fall under #RumourMill.

If we do hear of anything, you’ll be the first to know, after us of course as we’ll be writing it up.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Wow – I didn't see this coming whatsoever!

    What an intriguing development, I fairly sure it'll never happen here in the UK though, not least as Vodafone have their world wide HQ here.

    Good old 3 hey!

    Trevor.

  2. Rob, I think your contradicting yourself there 🙂

    You say “the enterprise will henceforth be trading solely under the ‘3′ brand name” while a couple of sentences further on you cite the press release with “Vodafone Australia Limited and Hutchinson 3G Australia Pty, will be run under the new name of VHA Pty Limited.”

    I'm just bringing this up because I wish that '3' would remain its own brand and was shocked when I heard of this press release a few days ago.

    It seems likely that the '3' brand will only remain as long as the merger needs to be approved and a new marketing & branding strategy is figured out. Then it will probably cease to exist and become a 'Vodafone' service/sub-brand. This can take quite a while, until then it's business as usual. The integration of infrastructure is apparently happening as we speak as the merger is a done deal.

    I only hope that this new brand will retain some of the inventiveness and willingness to extend the boundaries that '3' did understand so well.

    So much for healthy competition though.

  3. Rob, I think you're contradicting yourself there 🙂

    You say “the enterprise will henceforth be trading solely under the ‘3′ brand name” while a couple of sentences further on you cite the press release with “Vodafone Australia Limited and Hutchinson 3G Australia Pty, will be run under the new name of VHA Pty Limited.”

    I'm just bringing this up because I wish that '3' would remain its own brand and was shocked when I heard of this press release a few days ago.

    It seems likely that the '3' brand will only remain as long as the merger needs to be approved and a new marketing & branding strategy is figured out. Then it will probably cease to exist and become a 'Vodafone' service/sub-brand. This can take quite a while, until then it's business as usual. The integration of infrastructure is apparently happening as we speak as the merger is a done deal.

    I only hope that this new brand will retain some of the inventiveness and willingness to extend the boundaries that '3' did understand so well.

    So much for healthy competition though.

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