Vodafone moves to boost mobile enterprise offerings

Vodafone has acquired two companies and partnered with a third to strengthen its enterprise service portfolio

With price pressure nibbling away its consumer voice business, Vodafone Group has taken steps to move beyond its traditional mobile phone operations and strengthen its service portfolio in the potentially lucrative enterprise market.

The group's U.K. subsidiary has acquired Aspective and Isis Telecommunications Management, and signed a strategic partnership with Fiberlink Communications, the British operator said Monday.

The deals aim to help the operator develop capabilities in three core areas: applications, access and service.

Aspective is a consultancy specialized in developing enterprise applications, such as CRM (customer relationship management), to run over mobile platforms.

Isis Communications Management brings added service capability, particularly in fleet management and billing.

In a move to provide added access capability, Vodafone will offer Fiberlink's Extend360 Mobility Platform, which offers secure cellular access to corporate VPNs (virtual private networks).

The deals come in response to demands from large enterprise customers for support with billing and analysis tools, management of their device fleets, mobile data applications and interfaces to internal systems, Pauline Trotter, an analyst with Ovum, wrote in a report.

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