Vodafone Group Plc (ADR) (NASDAQ:VOD) has unveiled a new brand aimed at consumers aged 25 and below as it seeks to grab market share from competitors in the youth segment. The brand known as Voxi will be launched in the next week and will be Vodafone’s first sub-brand in the United Kingdom. For the youth market users will benefit from unlimited data consumption with regards to popular messaging and social media apps.
Voxi is the latest product by an established operator in the SIM card-only space where carriers sell services only but not devices. The Three mobile network earlier in the month unveiled a similar low-cost brand known as Smarty.
The new product officering is part of efforts by Vodafone to revitalize its brand in the United Kingdom after concerns were raised that the Vodafone brand stands for nothing. In the recent past Vodafone has had challenges with regards to customer service and the carrier is hoping to turn things around in its domestic market. Though Vodafone has 19 million customers in the United Kingdom it has underperformed compared to competitors for close to a decade.
In other markets such as Portugal Vodafone has also unveiled sub-brands aimed at younger users. This is based on the belief that young people aged between 16 and 24 years consume 2 to 3 time more data vis-à-vis the average users. This demographic also communicates almost exclusively via messaging and social media apps including WhatsApp, Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) and Snap Inc (NYSE:SNAP) Snapchat.
In this niche in the United Kingdom there are about 10 million connections. To stress the youth credentials of Voxi Vodafone will introduce age restrictions and users will have to show proof of age prior to being signed up. Those who subscribe and stay on Voxi even after they have exceeded 25 years of age will not be cut off. Vodafone will also consider upgrading these customers to its more traditional plans once needs change. The sub-brand will be headed by Dan Lambrou and partly in the control of 100 new employees all aged 25 and under.
“We’ve worked with hundreds of people aged 25 and under, and have really listened to them. They are a generation that’s tired of being stereotyped and talked at,” said Lambrou.
On Tuesday shares of Vodafone Group Plc fell by 0.62% and closed at $28.85.