It is a reality that you are one of the most important managers in the recent history of the world of operators. A person of proven reputation and predetermination, so the first question is required. What pushes a successful manager to start an adventure as intense as the launch and commercial implementation of Virgin telco?
Spain is a market with one of the most complete telecommunications infrastructures both in Europe and in the world, and now it needs at national level an offer more aligned with current needs and above all that defends the decisions of each client, giving it control, respecting and no outdated rules.
Grupo Euskaltel has a history of success and tremendous potential. I was challenged to turn this potential into a sustained reality and do not hesitate for a second. I believe in the company, its teams and its talent; and the opportunity we have to demonstrate it.
I like challenges that create value for society and allow Spain to be a competitive country. Since June 2019 when I assumed the position of CEO of Grupo Euskaltel, it was clear that one of his main tasks was to work on expanding the group nationwide, one of the milestones set out in our roadmap for our 2020 Business Plan- 2025.
His brilliant stint at Jazztel marked a before and after in terms of the way, if we are allowed the expression of “attacking a market”, will we see that particular way of being competitive again at Virgin telco?
I understand that yes, I have a way of working and a mission that joins my experience and my passion for doing things well. Virgin telco’s offer is based on total respect for the consumer and their needs. Telecommunications are essential in our lives and the client is manifested as an essential and central piece of the company’s strategy.
The new brand brings consumers a competitive offer of quality quadruple play services with a differential commitment: a format that breaks the traditional closed packages so that the consumer can configure it by choosing only what they need, save unnecessary costs and have the best price final.
Whenever an operator appears, you will agree with us that it is difficult to surprise the user and the always complex world of rates that on the other hand has tended to be simplified since Fusion made its appearance on the market. How does Virgin think in this regard? Will simplification be your commercial DNA or do you have any other surprises in store for us?
Yes. Virgin telco is framed under the attributes of flexibility, simplicity, quality, closeness and honesty. The client can contract their services in a close, simple, fast way, with full autonomy, online, without small print and without forcing grouped contracts. In just 3 minutes, you can choose what you want, the services that best suit your needs.
Another debate in the world of operators is that of brands, when for some time the purchase of companies was followed by a strong brand unification, now it seems that we are living the opposite. Under this new trend can the existence of Euskaltel be explained , R and Telecable?
Euskaltel, R and Telecable were the companies that starred in the break with the telephony monopoly 25 years ago and share history, values and principles. Both R, Telecable and Euskaltel, we have taken care of our respective brands and have strengthened our link with customers through them.
The image that consumers have of a brand is formed over time with a set of pieces that can be brought together in the knowledge of the brand, the predisposition to hire it, as well as the experience in its consumption once contracted.
The three brands coexist and are strengthened within the same Group and now we do the same with Virgin, a brand that establishes alliances with different operators throughout the world. He chooses his allies very well. The Euskaltel Group with its R, Telecable and Euskaltel brands share with Virgin the challenging and non-conformist spirit of the brand founded by Richard Branson. That is why the alliance makes perfect sense and allows us to obtain immediate visibility in the market.
The consumer increasingly values the reality of the experience and is less influenced by the story of the brands. This is why authenticity is vital. Do what is said and say what is thought and felt, what is. Companies that build stories foreign to their being are unmasked and discarded or penalized.
Another of the big questions that the consumer and the analysts of the sector ask themselves is whether or not there is a gap for five large operators or if, in its absence, this advances a new purchase or merger of one of the large companies, can you give us your opinion on the respect?
The Spanish telecommunications market is the most active and dynamic in Europe. We have an enviable sector in infrastructure and companies. There are four million customers that change operators every year and that will continue even if there are more or fewer operators. We have been competing in the north of Spain with our three brands for more than 25 years, so we know how to compete in competitive environments. Competition comes not only from operators but also from offers available on the market. Grupo Euskaltel was one of the first to offer a quadruple play offer, in which the client can quickly and easily choose the services they want to hire in just 3 minutes.
The best way to manage a market with high competitors is to continually strive to understand our clients and know how to detect their needs. An example of this is that we have a business unit dedicated to machine learning and AI so that clients – from SMEs to large ones – can be today and always competitive.
If we focus on daily work, it seems key to know if Virgin will deploy one fiber outside the Basque Country, Asturias or Galicia. Are they going to leave what we can say their field of action?
We have reached agreements with companies in the sector such as Telefónica and Orange to be able to access their fiber optic network and increase our footprint, reaching nearly 19 million homes located in new territories in Spain. Furthermore, we are structuring other agreements with other companies to increase our presence and developing online and non-contact sales channels.
In relation to the telco sector, the markets have harshly punished practically all large companies, the fall in income in the sector has been the general trend, which is why other competitors are offering other products, insurance, alarms, even a bank. Virgin plans to launch other services outside of telecommunications?
We are focused on our Business Plan 2020-2025, which will allow us to access new profitable growth opportunities on which the positive evolution in customers and profitability of the company will be based within the telecommunications environment. So we will analyze all the opportunities that arise to us to achieve our objectives.
Finally, we would like to talk about the always hackneyed issue of football, since you understand that there are many users of Virgin as well as the rest of the competition for which it is key to know if your operator will offer this sport or not. Do we understand that it will bet on it ? If we deny the major, can you give us any clue or indication that Virgin should enter, never better said, “this field of play”?
We want to transform communications so that they are better, more honest and more accessible to all people. In this market, there is still a lack of convergent services at a good price.
Virgin telco responds to this need by breaking the status quo of traditional closed packages, which do not add value and make the final cost more expensive. We propose a different way of consuming premium telecommunications and entertainment products to adapt to the needs of all generations and new digital homes. In this sense, OTTs will play an essential role, so our new brand is developing a competitive offer and will be backed by important agreements that will be announced in due course.