Russ Shaw and Dr. Nasser Marafih shaking hands after the signing
The Qtel Group announced today a commercial agreement with Skype, whereby its mobile broadband subsidiary wi-tribe, will promote Skype and its related products over wi-tribe’s networks in Jordan and the Philippines; two key markets for wi-tribe.
Under the agreement, wi-tribe; a provider of wireless broadband Internet, will enable customers in the respective markets to easily download Skype software and connect with their family and friends.
Dr. Nasser Marafih, Group CEO, Qtel, commented: “The Qtel Group’s strategy for innovation is driven by the needs of our customers, and enabled by partnerships with like-minded companies. We recognise the changes taking place in the market and the increasing customer demand for rich communications solutions, and so have decided to partner with Skype - one of the pioneers in the industry. This is a first-of-its-kind in our Middle East region and we look forward to working closely with Skype to deliver the best possible customer experience.”
Skype had 145 million average monthly connected users for the three months ended 31 December 2010 and according to TeleGeography in January 2011, Skype-to-Skype calling minutes in 2010 were equivalent to approximately 20% of total global international PSTN and Skype-to-Skype calling minutes. With today’s partnership announcement, more users in the Middle-Eastern and Asian regions will enjoy easy accessibility to popular Skype features such as free Skype-to-Skype calls, instant messaging, low cost calls to landlines and mobiles as well as the recently launched Group Video Calling.
“We’re very excited to be working with the Qtel Group and wi-tribe,” commented Russ Shaw, Vice President and General Manager for Mobile, Skype. “wi-tribe is a high performance wireless Internet experience with a customer centric approach, much like Skype. We believe that Skype and service-providers can complement each other to bring greater value for consumers – and have seen successful examples of this around the world. We look forward to working closely with the Qtel Group to progress the wi-tribe partnership and support the growth of the Internet ecosystem within the Middle-Eastern and Asian regions.”
To kick off the partnership, Skype and wi-tribe will distribute Skype credit vouchers for customers in the Philippines and in Jordan. These vouchers will enable customers to enjoy free calls to landlines and mobiles over Skype using the wi-tribe mobile broadband network.