Vodafone Australia is purchasing MVNO Lebara’s Australian mobile business assets, including its customer base and the right to use the Lebara brand in Australia. No financial details of the takeover were disclosed.
Lebara launched in Australia in 2009 and uses the Vodafone network, including 4G access since June. This should help make the transition “seamless” for customers, said Vodafone chief strategy officer Dan Lloyd.
Vodafone will retain the Lebara brand as a separate mobile entity, and as such will keep on all Lebara Mobile employees and customer service agents, as well as Lebara’s existing customer service and sales channels. Adding the Lebara brand to its business will allow Vodafone to provide consumers with low-cost international mobile calling, Lebara CEO Yoganathan Ratheesan said.
Vodafone Australia is a 50-50 joint venture between Vodafone Group and Hutchison and counts around 5 million customers. Lebara has around 130,000 customers in Australia. Following the takeover, Lebara will continue to operate its Lebara Play and Lebara Money services in Australia and remains active as a MVNO in seven other countries.