Virgin Media has agreed a five-year mobile deal with Vodafone UK which will see Virgin Mobile services, including 5G, hosted on the Vodafone network.
The deal will replace Virgin Media’s current agreement with BT which expires in late 2021.
Full Virgin Mobile services will start to move across to the Vodafone network from then, but Virgin Mobile 5G products will launch on Vodafone in the “near future”, the companies said.
The deal will involve more than three million mobile customers.
The new Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) agreement will see Vodafone supply wholesale mobile network services, including voice and data, to Virgin Mobile and Virgin Media Business.
Virgin Media will have full access to all of Vodafone’s current services and future technology, such as its 5G network.
Virgin Media chief executive Lutz Schuler said: “This agreement with Vodafone will bring a host of fantastic benefits and experiences to our customers, including 5G services in the near future.
“Twenty years ago Virgin Mobile became the world’s first virtual operator and this new agreement builds on that heritage. It will open up a whole new world of opportunity for Virgin Media as we focus on becoming the most recommended brand for customers and bring our mobile and broadband connectivity closer together in one package for one price.
“We’ve worked with BT to provide mobile services for many years and will continue to work together in a number of areas. We want our customers to have a limitless experience – it’s now the right time to take a leap forward with Vodafone to grow further and faster.”
Vodafone UK chief executive Nick Jeffery said: “We are delighted that Virgin has recognised the huge investments we’ve made, and continue to make, in building the UK’s best mobile network and our role in challenging the market with new commercial services. As a result, they have chosen us to work with them in the next phase of their development.
“This is an exciting deal between two great British brands. We are combining our strong heritage in innovation to create a world without limits for our customers through unlimited data offers and 5G.”