Dick Smith has just entered the direct post-paid mobile market through a new partnership with Vodafone, but has confirmed it is already holding ongoing talks with both Telstra and Optus in hopes of expanding its portfolio.
The contract between Dick Smith and Vodafone is therefore intentionally non-exclusive.
Dick Smith investor relations director, David Cooke, told ARN the structure of the deal allows the retailer to offer customers choice rather than steering buyers elsewhere by dedicating itself to one provider if and when it is to secure others.
On the flipside, a Vodafone spokesperson said the telco intends to hold its own by competing directly with its big-name rivals if and when Dick Smith expands its post-paid repertoire.
The spokesperson also confirmed that Vodafone is definitely looking at other retailers. It believes that exclusive relationships, such as that between JB Hi-Fi and Telstra or Harvey Norman and Optus is not beneficial for competition.
As part of this agreement, Vodafone’s post-paid products and services will be sold in 276 Dick Smith stores across Australia, doubling the telco’s retail presence to 549 outlets; it already has 114 of its own stores, and is stocked by 159 partners.
Products will include big-brand 4G smartphones spanning flagships and other models from the likes of Apple, Samsung, HTC, and Sony, as well as Huawei-manufactured mobile broadband devices.
Dick Smith did not reveal the initial length or value of the contract, but said that if both parties meet a set of undisclosed expectations, it will be extended.
Cooke claims Dick Smith represents 25 per cent of all unlocked handsets sales in Australia. He said the retailer intends to convert three to four percentage points of this figure to Vodafone.
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