Supermarkets steal share of mobile sales

Supermarkets captured 14 per cent of last year’s sales of pre-paid mobile phones, less than six months after they started selling them, according to a new report.

“The 1999 Pre-Paid Mobile Phone Market” study by Continental Research shows sales from Tesco accounted for eight per cent of those through supermarkets.

The multiples only began to sell mobile phones at the end of last year, when Asda tied with Cellnet and Tesco with Vodafone. Pre-paid phones account for 22 per cent of the market.

Dixons-owned The Link took 15 per cent of sales of the no-bill, pre-paid phones, whereas Vodafone Centre sold seven per cent and the country’s largest independent mobile phone retailer, Carphone Warehouse, sold four per cent. Electrical retailers such as Currys, Tandy, Comet and BT Phone Shops were entered as a single category, taking 32 per cent of the market.

Almost 2 million people subscribed to pre-paid schemes between October and December last year.

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