Vodafone’s acquisition of Liberty Global’s Czech, Romanian and Hungarian assets has undoubtedly strengthened its position in Central and Eastern Europe.
Insights into its plans for the three countries have been gradually emerging in recent weeks. In Romania, for instance, its general manager Murielle Lorilloux has said the integration process with UPC Romania will take up to three years. However, as recently as last month the company introduced a number of new converged offers targeting both consumers and businesses.
Meanwhile, in the Czech Republic, speaking to Rozhlas.cz, the company’s local VP CBU Quique Vivas has revealed that it plans to launch Vodafone TV in the Czech market next year. Just as importantly, he said that there are no plans for a forced migration from UPC’s Horizon to Vodafone TV. Instead, the company hopes customers will gradually shift to the latter as they see it offers a better service.
In Hungary, customers have also already seen the benefits of Vodafone’s acquisition of UPC through the introduction of new converged offers. At the same time, the UPC Mobil service has been withdrawn and UPC brand will be discontinued from April 2020.
In other important regional developments involving Vodafone, we learned earlier this week that Vodafone Ukraine will shortly have a new shareholder in the form of the Azeri telco Bakcell. This follows a decision by the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine (AMKU) to grant the telco permission to buy shares in the Dutch company Preludium, through which MTS Group owns what is Ukraine’s second largest mobile operator.
Vodafone has a strategic partnership with MTS and the mobile operator, formerly known as MTS Ukraine, has used its brand since 2015.