As of March 31 2003, Vodafone UK had 13.3 million registered customers.
In the UK, Vodafone handles 50 million calls and more than ten million text messages a day. Its UK digital network consists of 108 mobile switching centres, 8524 digital base station controllers and 20,817 base transceiver stations in service, giving 99% coverage of the population.
The Vodafone group is split into six operating divisions: Northern Europe; Central Europe; Southern Europe; the Americas; Asia Pacific; and Middle East and Africa.
In 1982, Racal-Vodafone was awarded the first UK licence to operate a cellular mobile telecommunications network. The network was launched on January 1 1985.
In 1991, Racal and Vodafone demerged and the Vodafone Group was listed on the London Stock Exchange. Vodafone launched the world's first digital GSM cellular network in December of that year.
In October 2003,Vodafone and Microsoft launched a joint venture to grow mobile internet services and kick-start mobile commerce.
The following month Vodafone Live! appointed ITN as its strategic news content partner to provide a video service for mobile phones.
Vodafone also launched its biggest-ever Christmas marketing campaign in November.
The £8m activity included TV ads by J Walter Thompson featuring a series of humorous Christmas scenes to support the Vodafone Live! service.
In December, Vodafone and Verizon Wireless, the world's biggest wireless network operator, teamed up to allow text messages to be sent and received transatlantically. The deal was aimed at increasing SMS use in the US.
Later that month Vodafone and Discovery Networks International signed an international deal for Vodafone to provide Discovery TV images and ringtones.
Vodafone's sports sponsorships include the England cricket team, Manchester United FC and the Ferrari Formula One team.
Pre-tax loss £6.2m
Group employees 70,000
(Figures for year to March 31 2003)
J Walter Thompson, Rodgers & Rodgers, GCAS Advertising
Frontline Media, OMD UK
New media agency
The Hub Communications
Harvard PR, Borkowski PR
Adspend (year to November 2003)
Direct mail £950,556
Lance Batchelor, marketing director
Vodafone House, The Connection, Newbury, Berkshire, RG14 2FN
Tel: 01635 332 51
Fax: 01635 457 513
Web site: www.vodafone.co.uk
This article was first published on Marketing