FreeMove announces joining of Amena
Strengthened footprint and new solutions boost alliance’s offering to the Multinational market
London, Rome, Bonn, Stockholm, Madrid 25 September 2006: FreeMove, the mobile telecommunications alliance between Orange, TeliaSonera, TIM (Telecom Italia Group) and T-Mobile today announced that Spanish operator Amena, part of the France Télécom group, has joined the FreeMove alliance. This will further add to the alliance’s offering to the multinational market, by strengthening its foothold in Spain, one of Europe’s key business markets.
Amena is Spain’s third largest mobile operator with a customer base of over 10 million. It delivers complementary geographical strength to the alliance as well as leadership in the business market, and was bought by France Télécom in July 2005. The FreeMove alliance now spans 26 countries in which it reaches reaches nearly 260 million customers across Europe, as well as additional operations across the USA and Brazil, bringing up the customer numbers to 295 million.
This strengthening of FreeMove’s international footprint complements the recent partnership of TeliaSonera, the Nordic and Baltic telecommunications leader.
Paolo Murri, Chairman of the FreeMove Management Board commented: “We see the continued development of the FreeMove alliance footprint and services as a way to continue to help businesses stay connected as employees travel. We look forward to working with Amena to develop improved communications services for companies and their employees.”
Belarmino Garcia, Chief Executive Officer of Amena said: “Joining the FreeMove alliance strengthens Amena’s international presence and gives our multi-national customers an extension of the benefits they currently receive through our network. We look forward to being a part of the alliance and working with Orange, TeliaSonera, TIM and T-Mobile to simplify mobile overseas working for businesses in Europe.”
FreeMove is also continuing to build on its offering to the MNC market with the launch of FreeMove International Connect, available since this summer. With International Connect FreeMove creates a defined group of users and presets the call rates between members of these groups. This includes international direct dialing, mobile to mobile, and mobile to defined number calls. These tailored prices apply to employees, no matter where they are in the world or what network they are on.
This service can immediately be deployed for FreeMove users in the UK (Orange), France, Germany, Belgium (Mobistar), Italy and Switzerland. Over the next few months, the alliance expects to expand the service for Orange users in Slovakia, Romania, the Netherlands, Poland and Spain and T-Mobile users in the UK, Netherlands, Austria, Hungary and the Czech Republic.
Together with the other services already launched for multi-national organisations, such as the Blackberry™ package providing standard pricing across multiple territories, central reporting and simplified account management, FreeMove will continue to support MNCs internationally. Through centralising purchasing power, FreeMove will ensure that its customers leverage their buying powers across borders, while also guaranteeing the quality and convenience expected at a local level.
Notes to editors
1) Telefónica Móviles, a subsidiary of Telefónica, announced its decision to leave the FreeMove alliance at the end of 2005, in accordance with the clearance decision adopted by the European Commission relating to Telefónica’s acquisition of O2. Its departure from the alliance in May 2006 has been gradual to ensure minimal inconvenience to customers.
FreeMove is a mobile telecommunications alliance between Orange, TeliaSonera, TIM (Telecom Italia Group) and T-Mobile. It was founded in 2003 and is committed to delivering an enhanced roaming experience to its customers, particularly in the multinational market, where it aims to provide mobility without complexity to its business customers. FreeMove now spans 26 markets across Europe and reaches nearly 260 million customers across Europe – more than any other mobile alliance or operator - as well as having additional operations across the USA and Brazil. For further information, visit www.freemovealliance.com
Orange is a key brand of the France Telecom Group, one of the world’s leading telecommunications operators with 147 million customers on five continents.
In June, 2006, as part of the France Telecom Group integrated operator strategy (NExT programme) to deliver simple, convergent products, Orange became the single brand for mobile, broadband and multiplay offers in France, the United Kingdom and The Netherlands, strengthening Orange’s position as the number two mobile and internet services brand in Europe. In addition, Orange Business Services became the new banner for business communications solutions and services. Orange Business Services is present in 166 countries and territories and serves customers in 220.
The France Telecom Group has 23 mobile and nine internet operations across the world. At July 27, 2006, the group had 88.6 million mobile customers, and 11.9 million internet customers.
Orange and any other Orange product or service names included in this material are trade marks of Orange Personal Communications Services Limited. Further information about Orange can be found on the Orange website at www.orange.com
About Telecom Italia
The Telecom Italia Group is Italy’s leading ICT enterprise and a major player on the world stage. The Group’s solid financial footing and competitive stance have made it a significant force in strategic markets ranging from fixed-line and mobile telecommunications to the Internet and high growth data services and broadband. The Group is driven by innovation, professionalism, high standards of service and a focus on the customer.
Mobile operations continue to operate under the TIM brand.
The Group supplies about 25 million fixed-network lines and 6.3 million broadband connections in Italy. TIM brand mobile telephony unit supplies over 30 million lines in Italy (3.4 million UMTS). Telecom Italia’s international reach is based on broadband and mobile telephony. Mobile operations outside Italy are concentrated in Turkey, and Brazil. TIM supplies more than 22.3 million mobile lines in South America. Outside Italy, the Group has a broadband portfolio of 1.6 million customers, mainly in France and Germany. For further information please visit: www.telecomitalia.it & www.tim.it.
About T-Mobile International
T-Mobile International is one of the world’s leading companies in mobile communications. As one of Deutsche Telekom`s three strategic business units, T-Mobile concentrates on the most dynamic markets in Europe and the United States. By the end of June 2006, over 90 million mobile customers were served by companies of the Deutsche Telekom group. And all that over a common technology platform based on GSM, the world’s most successful digital wireless standard. This also makes T-Mobile the only mobile communications provider with a seamless transatlantic service.
For more information about T-Mobile International, please visit www.t-mobile.net
TeliaSonera is the leading telecommunications company in the Nordic and Baltic regions. At the end of December 2005 TeliaSonera had 19,146,000 mobile customers (69,887,000 incl associated companies) and 7,064,000 fixed telephony customers (7,688,000 incl associated companies) and 2,263,000 internet customers (2,331,000 incl associated companies). Outside the home markets TeliaSonera has extensive interests in the growth markets in Russia, Turkey and Eurasia. TeliaSonera is listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange and the Helsinki Stock Exchange. Net sales January-December 2005 amounted to SEK 87.7 billion. The number of employees was 28,175. Further information can be found at www.teliasonera.com.
Amena, the third largest operator in Spain has 10.664 million customers and an estimated market share of 23.55% at June 2006. The company began offering mobile phone services on January, 25th 1999. Of the 10.664 million customers, 48.3% are contract, contributing higher value to the company, and 51.7% are prepaid. In recent years Amena has increased its percentage of contract customers from 42.9% at the end of 2003, to 48.3% as of today.
Amena continues to be a leader in innovation in Spain and has based its continuous growth in the launch of innovating products and services as the first handset in Spain with Windows Mobile operative system, video-call between two mobile phones, and between a PC and a mobile handset, multiplayer games, micro payments services “Pago Amena” and more recently, a mobile messenger service. In addition, through its 3G network, Amena offers a video-call service that allows customers to see each other on their handset. Amena's customers can enjoy a wide range of video content and streaming, such as football, traffic information, games and live news.
Amena is part of the France Telecom group and will adopt the Orange brand in October 2006.