Enterprise is one of Vodafone’s three so-called ‘growth engines’, representing just under a third of the company’s revenues (29% in FY2017). The company declared in its latest annual report that the division had performed well in its latest fiscal year, with revenues (ex regulation) up 2.1%.
The company notes that it is seeing a continued blurring between mobile, fixed and IT, as well as growth in IoT, security and other VAS (eg artificial intelligence, virtual reality and data analytics). It says there continues to be downward pressure on its legacy business but credits a positive performance largely to its IoT business. This division saw revenues rise 14% last year, with more than one million SIMs being added each month, revenues of $800 million and 1,500 staff focused on this area. In total, Vodafone now has 68 million IoT SIMs on its network, with services provided in key verticals such as automotive and financial services.
For example, the company reported that over 14.4 million vehicles are now connected to its IoT platform, a figure that is fuelled by deals with eight of the top ten car manufacturers globally. Five vehicle manufacturers are now also taking additional telematics services from Vodafone, and the company has grown to become the second biggest provider of usage-based insurance information in Europe.
In order to fuel future success, Vodafone will continue to innovate and acquire in IoT, and is betting big on digital channels. It currently handles a mere 1% of customer interactions via chatbot, but expects this to rise to 60% within three years. Over that same period it intends to reduce its reliance on indirect channels by growing its digital channel from 11% of sales today to more than 40% by 2021. The company noted that it has 200 bots already active in its service centres