Ericsson to Take Care of Vodafone's UK Network and may Ditch Handset Company

(18 Mar 2009, BWCS Staff)

Mobile network operator Vodafone has today signed a seven year agreement with Ericsson which will see the Swedish vendor provide maintenance and operations for the operator's second and third generation mobile networks in the UK. As part of the deal, around 350 workers will be transferred from the operator to the vendor. Both sides are confident that the contract will lead to appreciable cost-savings for Vodafone.

Meanwhile, it has emerged that Ericsson may be looking to sell its stake in its mobile handset making joint-venture, Sony Ericsson. According to reports in the German press Sony is keen to simply buy out the Swedish company's stake. However, the Japanese power-house is said to be short of cash, following some recent poor results and may have to rely on bank funding to finance the deal. Neither company has yet commented on the rumours.

In the UK, Ericsson says that its best practice tools, methods, processes and efficient resource allocation, will enable its managed services to improve Vodafone's network performance and reduce operational costs. According to Jeni Mundy, Chief Technology Officer, Vodafone UK, "We see this as a strategic long-term relationship, offering real operational and financial benefits, allowing us, over time, to reinvest savings in delivering new products and services for customers. Ericsson is the specialist in this area and will be critical in helping maintain our high quality network."


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