Superdrug is to launch its own Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO), offering discounted connectivity to members of its loyalty programme.
The service is exclusive to holders of a Superdrug Health and BeautyCard and costs £10 a month for 4GB of data and unlimited calls and texts. Any unused data can be rolled over the following month and if it is used up, then there are top ups on offer.
Several other retailers have their own MVNO, but Superdrug’s attempt to use one to foster customer loyalty and acquire more marketing data is novel. Indeed, any card holder on the network will get double points when they make purchases in-store.
The network is powered by Three, which is also used by Carphone Warehouse’s iD Mobile and SMARTY – an online only MVNO from Three itself. Indeed, Three and Superdrug are both owned by CK Hutchison and there are several Three concessions in Superdrug stores.
“We are very excited about Superdrug Mobile, which is a great example of an already strong brand further strengthening its customer engagement model through a mobile offering,” said Three’s director of wholesale, Lynda Burton.
“We worked closely together on the complex task of integrating their loyalty scheme into a mobile offering to deliver a great product. We understand that brand owners are not always telecoms experts, so we make things simple so that our partners can focus on managing their customers while we take care of everything else.”
Last month CK Hutchison announced a Europe-wide agreement with Xiaomi to sell its smartphones. Both Three and Superdrug were mentioned as stockists for the devices.
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Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.