Milan, Italy — Omnitel Pronto Italia today announced it signed an agreement to sell Infostrada products through Omnitel's sales network. Omnitel's more than 100 Spazio Omnitel shops and independent sales points will now also sell Infostrada's fixed network and Internet products.
This is the maiden agreement between the first alternatives to the former Italian telecommunications monopolies; Omnitel in the cellular market and Infostrada in the wireline sector. Omnitel and Infostrada believe that even though they continue to operate independently in their respective markets, potential operating synergies can be exploited between the two companies.
Omnitel's capillary sales network is one of the keys to the success of the Italian cellular company, which is now the second largest mobile operator in Europe with 6.5 million customers in just over three years of operation, making it one of the fastest-growing start-ups in telecommunications history.
Infostrada, a major new player in the wireline sector, is the fastest growing of last year's new European wireline operators, reaching one-and-a-half million customers at the end of February, averaging over 8,500,000 minutes of traffic daily.
Omnitel has about 2,000 dealers in Italy, in addition to more than 100 Spazio Omnitel outlets, its network of franchising shops. The Spazio Omnitel shops are located in all major Italian cities, with a significant increase in locations expected during 1999. In three years of operations Omnitel's sales network has provided commercial services, information, and technical assistance to tens of thousands of customers every day, completing the transition to a new sales concept in Italy that puts the customer at the center of all the company's activities.
"This agreement is the first example of issues we have often discussed," says Vittorio Colao, Omnitel's Chief Operating Officer. "We believe that the agreement will guarantee increased sales efficiency for both companies. Omnitel's sales network has been essential for the company's success and will definitely benefit from expanding its offer to include Infostrada's products."
"As we have often said, we have been seeking synergies with Omnitel," says Riccardo Ruggiero, Managing Director of Infostrada. "I am sure that this agreement, together with the opening up of new sales channels, will make it easier for Infostrada's customer to find our products, improving the quality of services offered and strengthening the already huge success achieved by Infostrada."