Public Mobile Expands Retail Footprint

by Jordan Richardson on June 16, 2010

Public Mobile is expanding their retail presence with a new deal struck with Gateway Newstands. The vendor, generally located in subway stations and shopping malls, confirmed the deal on Monday.

The move comes as the larger market players – Bell, Telus, Rogers – have made similar moves to expand their market presences. Rogers was recently unceremoniously “evicted” from The Source by Bell Canada, for instance, after BCE Inc. acquired the electronics retailer and received market presence in more than 750 stores nationwide.

Rogers has recently taken on an agreement with Shoppers Drug Mart and WIND Mobile has recently taken on an agreement with Blockbuster Inc., although the latter doesn’t seem to be working out all that well with the video store chain shutting down stores across Canada.

Nevertheless, Public Mobile’s partnership with Gateway Newstands sure has precedence and it does look to make considerable sense.

This expands Public Mobile’s point-of-sale presence, for starters, and that’s never a bad thing. With Gateway’s 152 locations in Toronto, Public Mobile suddenly becomes a lot more visible. The newsstand locations will feature Public Mobile products and services, even allowing customers the ability to pay their bills and purchase exclusive Public Mobile phones.

Gateway kiosks in Montreal will be next on the list.

Demographically, the move also makes sense. Consider the fact that Gateway Newstands are largely located around transit stations and other similar locations. With Public Mobile’s focus on low income customers, these locations could not be more ideal. Putting the product front and centre in these locations is just smart business thinking.

“Gateway is the perfect partner, they’re everywhere we want to be,” Public Mobile’s CEO, Alek Krstajic, said in a release Tuesday.

We can expect to see a lot more of these types of promotional partnerships across Canada, too. As competition ramps up and as new rules and regulations branch out to replace the old ones, the industry’s evolution will venture to some very compelling places.

Canada Post, for instance, recently posted big newspaper ads across the nation to let providers know that their post offices are ready and willing to serve as hubs for exclusive wireless providers.

There’s virtually no limit to marketing partnerships, as anyone with the slightest business awareness knows. Whether it’s product placements or a full marketing relationship, the sky is literally the limit as Canada’s telecommunications industry slides into a new era.

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