ekit Inc., a JT Group company, has added to its range of travel communications services with the acquisition of pre-paid mobile communications provider Fonepool.
Fonepool provides a streamlined method of purchasing mobile phone services for people moving to a new country. It also offers a selection of low cost prepaid SIM cards and mobile services for popular destinations around the world.
With offices in Ireland, Ecuador and the United States, Fonepool’s main focus is US-bound travellers temporarily relocating from Europe, primarily in the J-1 working visa market (one of the most popular visa categories), but its customers originate from over 75 countries and use their services worldwide.
The company was founded in 2003 by John Dennehy and current Managing Director Colman Lydon who will be joining the ekit team as a consultant, with a view to developing new business opportunities and assisting with the integration.
Andrew McDonald, ekit’s Managing Director, said that, as well as enhancing its market share in an extremely competitive sector, this acquisition would open up new sales channels for its US and international roaming SIM cards via Fonepool’s existing distribution partners and would aid its global expansion plans.
He said: “Communications solutions for international travellers are in very high demand, but the current market is fragmented with varied and diverse offerings. ekit is already one of the foremost companies in this sector and our acquisition of Fonepool will enable us to provide a full range of innovative solutions to our customers in the most cost-effective way and help us to consolidate our position as market leader.”
“The addition of Fonepool’s product portfolio will also add to our experience in new prepaid SIM card payment processes and technologies, such as SMS and Twitter-based top-up purchases.”
“JT also hopes, as with ekit, that our CI customers will be able to benefit from the access to new products and services as a direct result of this acquisition, such as the new Friends and Family product already providing local customers with direct savings,’” added Mr McDonald.
ekit's products and services are designed to keep business and leisure travellers connected in a cost-effective way by providing a suite of travel communication services including mobile phones, SIM cards, global calling cards, VOIP calling, voicemail, text messaging and online location mapping.
These services are accessible worldwide from more than 180 countries and ekit already partners with over 400 international operators, including leading travel brands such as Orbitz, American Express Vacations, Lonely Planet, Flight Centre, STA Travel, Qantas Holidays, Hostelling International, Rail Europe, DER Tours, EF Tours, Trafalgar Tours and Contiki Holidays.
Mr Lydon, of Fonepool, commented: “ekit is an industry leader in the provision of international travel communications products, and with the support and global reach of JT Group’s worldwide network, it is ideally poised to deliver expert and affordable solutions to travellers who need to stay connected while on the move.”
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