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Vodafone

Vodafone

Vodafone Group was established in 1982 in Great Britain. 'Voda' is short for 'voice data'. The telecom company generated the first British mobile phone call on 1 January 1985 and rapidly expanded to become a worldwide phenomenon in the following years.

Today, Vodafone Group is one of the world's largest mobile telecommunications companies revenue-wise, with 523.5 million mobile customers and 18.5 million fixed broadband customers as of 30 June 2017. Vodafone has mobile operations in 26 countries, partners with mobile networks in 49 more, and has fixed broadband operations in 17 markets. 

Vodafone entered the Dutch market in 1995 under the name Libertel. At that moment in time, a mere 2 percent of the Dutch had a mobile phone. But all that changed in the blink of an eye. That same year Libertel gained 26,000 subscribers, in 1998 that number had grown to 1 million.

After building a network in the entire Randstad area, the next challenge was national coverage. 'Everyone accessible, accessible to everyone', was the slogan of the advertising campaign when that milestone had been achieved. 

In 1997, Libertel was the first to introduce prepaid in the Netherlands. This was launched as 'calling without a subscription' under the name Libertel iZi. In the advertising campaign topping up your call time was depicted by a bank note and a mobile phone. The following days, customer service was flooded with questions where to insert that bank note...

In 1999, the company went public, the first Libertel shops opened their doors and it became possible for the first time to call mobile customers of another network in the Netherlands. At the end of 2000, Vodafone became a majority shareholder in the company and changed the name into Libertel-Vodafone. Early 2002, the name Libertel disappeared altogether and the brand officially changed to Vodafone.

By now, Vodafone offers 4G+ coverage in more than 250 municipalities in the Netherlands. Across the Netherlands there are over 3,500 4G masts and hundreds of small transmitter masts at busy locations like holiday parks, the beach, shopping centres and office locations. Each year Vodafone provides a top-notch network during hundreds of events, including Pinkpop, Serious Request and Sensation. During the sailing event SAIL the company even introduced the first floating mobile mast. During Gay Pride, Vodafone is also present on the water.

Vodafone is the second mobile telecommunication company in the Netherlands based on revenue and profitability. For years the company has been the market leader now in the field of Internet of Things (smart connections between appliances and systems). The Vodafone offices are located in Amsterdam, Utrecht, Eindhoven and Maastricht, among other places. Vodafone Netherlands is part of VodafoneZiggo, a 50/50 joint venture of Vodafone Group and Liberty Global.

For more information (in Dutch) about Vodafone products and services: Vodafone.nl.