Last month, Mobilicity introduced a new branding strategy and slashed U.S. data roaming rates by 70 percent. The carrier already has a strong distribution channel in Toronto, Vancouver and Edmonton through its partnership with 7-Eleven convenient stores.
And now it has stepped up the ante by announcing a distribution agreement with Walmart Canada which would see the firm`s wireless phones and airtime bundles sold in approximately 50 Walmart stores across Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver.
With due respect to other players, Walmart is undoubtedly the ‘Big Daddy of Retail’ and this partnership may well prove to be a huge shot in the arm for Mobility as it prepares to counter the dominance of the “Big Three”.
Apart from 7-Eleven, Mobilicity also has existing partnerships with HMV and Zellers. The news about Mobilicity- Walmart partnership was first leaked through a leaked report which claimed that the deal was inked just in time for back-to-school season. The leaked document suggested 3 prepaid bundles which offer a phone with 2 months of talk and text service. Mobilicity subsequently released a press note which mentioned
“Mobilicity Unlimited Prepaid bundles provide consumers with an easy and affordable way to buy and use a mobile phone. Each bundle comes complete with a quality, brand-name mobile device plus two months of the carrier’s unlimited talk and text service (some bundles also include unlimited data).”
“We are delighted to be working with Walmart to deliver compelling value in mobile phones,” said Mobilicity Chief Customer Officer Anthony Booth. “Mobilicity is all about helping Canadians make smart purchasing decisions. Like Walmart, we are committed to giving people more for their money and helping make a difference in their everyday lives.”
The Walmart deal is expected to boost Moblicity’s retail network and help it make further inroads in its targeted segments – young or lower-income consumers looking for inexpensive wireless services. MobileSyrup reports that Mobilicity has taken a bit of room up on the floor of Staples Canada to offer an “Exclusive to Staples” deal for $129.99 and includes unlimited talk, text and free data for 3 months.
There is little doubt that a strong retail presence plays a crucial role in determining a carrier’s success as cell phone services are getting increasingly commoditized. Among the new entrants, Public Mobile and Mobilicity have explored numerous partnership avenues to strengthen their distribution channel. How much the Walmart deal will actually help Mobilicity boost its sales remains to be seen.