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EE CEO expects sales boost when rivals roll-out 4G

Michael Garwood
July 25, 2013

EE CEO Olaf Swantee believes 4G marketing from O2 and Vodafone will help drive sales through its own stores. Operator on course to beat one million customer target by end of year. 

EE CEO Olaf Swantee says he expects footfall in its 600 retail stores to increase when O2 and Vodafone launch their own 4G networks this summer.

Swantee, who was discussing the operators half-year financial performance (full story here), told Mobile News he doesn’t expect its current 4G customer growth rate, currently 687,000, to slow when its rivals launch their own 4G networks this summer.

He said the increased awareness of 4G generated by its rivals will ultimately benefit EE, claiming customers will instinctively head towards its stores based on its early adoption and experiences.

Swantee said: “It will be  good for us. The awareness is increasing and 4G linkage to the EE brand is big. So when customers are considering a 4G service – clearly they will first go the company with the most experience in that area and has the biggest and fastest 4G network.

“So we think when the others start marketing their 4G services, it should actually create more footfall for us.”

He added: “We will continue innovating, roll out our 4G network and further strengthen it. We have doubled speeds now and in 15 cities and will further extend that. When the others 4G networks come to the market, we will continue to execute our own plan.”

One million target

Swantee also said he now expects EE to beat its targets of signing up more than one million 4G customers by the end of the year, given its current growth rate.

The operator first announced the target back in April  following its Q1 financial results, which showed numbers had reached 318,000 since launching late October.

That figure has however more than doubled in just three months to 687,000, with Olaf now expecting more than one million 4G  users by the start of 2014.

Swantee said: “If you take our current run rate we will exceed one million and we expect to hit our target a little earlier than expected. When exactly I can’t say, but we are confident we will achieve it earlier.”


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