Tuesday, March 28, 2006

JupiterResearch: Back from Budapest

Thomas Husson posts at the Jupiter Analyst Weblogs about a recent trip to Budapest, the first time he has been to the city in ten years. Husson writes that from a mobile perspective:

a quick glimpse on shops and TV ads, let me think the usual suspects have entered the market has well. Market leader is...T-mobile Hungary with more than 4M subscribers at the end of 2005. Vodafone (rolling out its worldwide ad campaign NOW : "make the most of NOW, anywhere, anytime") is number 3 with almost 1.8 M subscribers after Pannon (slightly over 3M). According to those numbers, more than 8 out of 10 people in Hungary own a mobile phone. The penetration rate is already higher than in France.
Husson notes that early morning TV ads on the Hungarian MTV channel were "for ringtones and logos are clearly there. Out of 6 ads, 3 for Jamba and 3 for LaNetro Zed*, promoting you at least 10 ringtones and asking you to send an SMS to a 5-digit shortcode."

Husson was in the city for a "conference on mobile CRM, loyalty and retention strategies organized by IIR," and his "role was to give an overview of the role of mobile services in loyalty progammes." Husson writes that:
Most loyalty managers concentrate on voice, handsets and brands, the 3 main customer acquistion and retention tools. Few of them already integrate mobile services. In exchange of a certain anmount of bonus points, SFR allows its clients to benefit from ringtones and even recently to test new services such as mobile TV. This is an interesting trend to reward consumers and initiate the use of multimedia services. Music and video are currently acqusition tools but no doubt they will be part of anti-churn and loyalty schemes once usage is firmly established. Mobile operators begin to allow their customers to store content and personal contacts on a server or on a MegaSIM, in case they change/lose their cellular.
He concludes with:
I am sure labels, pay TV companies, Internet companies providing e-mail/IM services and adress books will have a significant role to play. The rise of Direct to Consumers and Off-Portal will stimulate the appetite of CRM companies. A good example for that is the recent rumor of Amdocs acquiring Q-Pass (according to FierceMoCo)...No doubt the audience of such a conference will be significantly different next year !
* LaNetro Zed is a discreet but profitable mobile content company, which generated 25M euros EBITDA margin out of revenues from 136M euros in 2005 ! Actually, they acquired the mobile content pioneer ZED (their consumer brand) from TeliaSonera back in September 2004. The reason for such a profitability is that they claim to own the intellectual property of up to 85% of their content, so they have no royalties to pay...By the way, they will soon enter the French market having recently partnered with Netsize.