Tele2 NL offers heavy mobile discounts to fixed users in convergence bid

Tele2 Netherlands turned up the heat on its rivals by offering its fixed-line customers heavy discounts on mobile services, but only for the next fortnight.

The operator last week announced it would offer a €50 ($54.45) discount on its mobile services for existing fixed-line service subscribers, Telecompaper reported. Tele2 Netherlands made the offer to customers signed up to its fixed-line internet packages, including those who have chosen internet and calls, TV or a combination of the three.

Subscribers must agree to a two-year mobile contract to enjoy the discount, which will be available until mid-March. Another condition is that the customers select a deal that includes a mobile device, excluding users who may be seeking a SIM-only deal, Telecompaper stated.

The subscriber offer by Tele2 Netherlands comes a matter of weeks after Vodafone and Liberty Global agreed to merge their operations in the country, where converged services are becoming an increasingly important bargaining chip in terms of subscriber acquisition and retention.

At the time, Jefferies International analysts noted that the combination of Vodafone NL with Liberty's Ziggo cable business headed off potential problems for the UK-headquartered mobile operator. Dutch incumbent KPN is stepping up its convergence play in the market, meaning that if Vodafone had failed to take steps to offer a rival converged service, it could have "found itself under increasing pressure" from its local rivals, the analysts said.

Tele2's latest offer in the market appears focused on hold-outs among its fixed-line subscriber base -- customers who may not previously have considered an all-in-one tariff covering fixed and mobile services, or packages combining those with access to TV products.

T-Mobile Netherlands remains at risk by its local rivals' push into triple- and quad-play convergence, as the only operator that does not have a fixed line offering to add to its existing mobile service.

Earlier this month, Reuters reported that parent company Deutsche Telekom had narrowed down a list of potential buyers for the Dutch operation to two: U.S. private equity companies Warburg Pincus, and Apollo.

For more:
- see this Telecompaper report
- view this Reuters article on T-Mobile NL

Related articles:
Vodafone strengthens Dutch convergence play with Liberty JV
Tele2 revamps management team with new CEOs in Sweden, Netherlands
Report: Warburg, Apollo to make final bids for T-Mobile Netherlands
Report: Dutch multi-play revenue nears €1B in Q3
Vodafone NL sues KPN for delaying its multi-play ambitions