Mobiles & Tablets

Voda Idea rebrands itself as ‘Vi’, unveils new logo

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on September 07, 2020 Published on September 07, 2020

Two years after Vodafone and Idea Cellular merged operations to form Vodafone Idea Ltd (VIL), the operator has rebranded its services as ‘Vi’ (read as ‘we’), as it starts afresh in a highly competitive telecom market.

Until now, VIL was offering services under two separate brands — Vodafone and Idea. The new brand will focus on initiatives such as digital and IoT and continue to invest in 4G services.

VIL is also looking at raising up to ₹25,000 crore to build a war chest to meet its AGR dues and to fund near-term network rollout.

“Vodafone and Idea came together as a merged entity two years ago. We have, since then, focussed on integrating the two large networks, our people and processes. The integration of the two brands is a culmination of the largest telecom integration in the world,” said VIL’s MD and CEO Ravinder Takkar. Nearly 93 per cent of the network integration has been completed, which includes shutting down 1 lakh sites that were overlapping.

Takkar indicated that going forward the operator will increase tariffs, which will improve its average revenue per user. This, along with the Supreme Court ruling that allows VIL to pay its AGR dues over the next 10 years, should help it to stay afloat in the near term.

But a brand change alone will not be enough for VIL to recover lost ground, said experts. Lloyd Mathias, Business Strategist and former telecom and technology executive, said: “The company will need to focus on pricing and improving its services, as a lot of customer loss from both Vodafone and Idea has happened due to network quality deterioration and the more aggressive pricing and offerings from competitors Jio and Airtel.”

“So, hopefully, they will use the noticeability the rebranding gives them to convey to consumers any improvement in services, pricing and product offerings. This of course will have to be backed by a real difference in terms of a strong and reliable network. This is the only way the loss of subscribers will be arrested,” he added.

Harish Bijoor, Brand Guru and founder, Harish Bijoor Consults Inc, said a brand is about image. And a brand with a good, positive, involved and efficient image can nudge sales. “That nudge and that relationship metric is largely not a direct measure in bringing back the customers Vodafone Idea has been losing. The world today and tomorrow is about digital life. Vodafone Idea will live and thrive in that space. Whether this new logo represents and captures that space is something only time will tell.”

“What's really in a logo? I don't get too excited by new logos. A logo is only as good as you make it over years. A logo is not what you see as an artwork. It's more. It's what you pack in it over years,” he added.

With inputs from Nandana James

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Published on September 07, 2020
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