If you’re on Aldi or Kogan pre-paid mobile, then chances are you’re about to hear from your provider shortly. According to the Australian Financial Review, ISPOne has called in administrators and cancelled their contract to provide 3G Mobile services to the MVNO’s from Telstra.
This latest development follows this mornings decision by Kogan to stop offering 90 day or 365 day recharges on their service.
Gizmodo has provided a full statement from Telstra which reads :
Telstra Wholesale has been advised that ispONE has appointed Ferrier Hodgson as a voluntary administrator and the administrator has cancelled ispONE’s contracts for the supply of Telstra Wholesale pre-paid mobile products.
Telstra Wholesale has entered into an interim agreement with Medion Australia for the supply of wholesale prepaid mobile services. Medion is the supplier to ALDIMobile.
ispONE had been a customer of Telstra Wholesale for mobile products as well as a broadband and a relatively small number of fixed line voice products. ispONE on-sold these products and services to retailers and in some instances to the public. For example, ispONE supplied two companies, the online retailer Kogan and Medion (who sells mobile service through the ALDIMobile brand), utilising the Telstra Wholesale pre-paid mobile product.
Telstra Wholesale Group Managing Director, Stuart Lee, confirmed that given the relationship with ispONE for pre-paid mobile services had ended, Telstra would not be accepting any requests for new Kogan Mobile services from ispONE, although people with existing services would have the opportunity to switch to other providers.
“For mobiles, we will not be accepting new activations, number port-ins or processing credit recharges from ispONE on behalf of Kogan Mobile. An interim service will be available for a fixed period of time for people who have active pre-paid mobile services from Kogan Mobile so they have time to choose their next steps,” said Mr Lee.
“Because Medion and Telstra Wholesale have been able to negotiate a direct supply agreement there will be no changes to the services for ALDI Mobile.
People who have services through ispONE and its retail partners, such as Kogan Mobile, are not customers of Telstra.
“We do not have their account information and we cannot provide them any customer service support. For any questions about their service, people should contact their retail service provider,” said Mr Lee.
There are limits to the industry’s capacity to implement mobile number porting requests and requests to churn fixed line voice and broadband services. If large numbers of people try to switch providers at once there may be some delays across the industry.
“People who want to change providers should approach their service provider of choice who can request the number port, but we would ask for patience as there are limits on how many ports the industry can undertake in addition to normal sales and activation activity. To provide for a smooth transition we are providing interim voice services across the impacted mobile and fixed line services.”
Last week, Telstra did comment that ‘We have contingency plans in place to limit the impact on end users’. So as to how far this will affect Kogan customers is unknown. But, it appears from the statement, that Aldi Mobile customers may be ok, having arranged an agreement between Medion – Aldi Mobiles parent company – and Telstra. Gizmodo has advised that Kogan has not commented as yet on this latest development and we have approached both Kogan and Aldi for comment on this situation and will update as soon as possible.
Aldi has issued a statement on the effects this will have on their 130,000 customers :
MEDION Australia and Telstra Wholesale have been able to negotiate a direct supply agreement today, so the network services for ALDImobile customers are not affected. Customers will be able to purchase ALDImobile sim cards and recharge vouchers as per normal through their local ALDI store or on www.aldimobile.com.au
ISPOne has referred all communications to their administrators. Stewart McCallum and John Lindholm Ferrier Hodgson have been named as the administrators and have issued the following statement :
The director of wholesale mobile phone and internet service provider ispONE Pty Ltd placed the company in voluntary administration today. Ferrier Hodgson partners Stewart McCallum and John Lindholm were appointed administrators.
Melbourne-based ispONE provides telecommunications services to wholesale and retail phone and internet providers throughout Australia. Its key service lines are wireless, pre-paid mobile, fixed-line phone and internet services for business and residential customers. The majority of these services are rebranded through about 100 retailers and internet service providers (ISPs).
Founded in 2002, ispONE also provides prepaid mobile services for 250,000 mobile users through Aldi’s Medion brand and Kogan’s Kogan Mobile brand. Telstra and Aldi came to agreement over the weekend to ensure ongoing supply of mobile services to 130,000 Aldi Medion customers. The appointment of administrators will not affect these customers. However, about 120,000 Kogan Mobile customers will be affected by the appointment of the administrators, who are working with Telstra in relation to a transition plan to ensure minimal disruption to their phone services. Kogan mobile customers will shortly receive communication from Telstra in that regard.
The 50,000 internet users whose services are provided via ispONE will not be affected by the administration. Those services will continue while the administrators assess the financial viability of the company and the options available.
Administrator, Mr Stewart McCallum, said prior to his appointment an agreement had been entered into for the sale of the fixed-line telephony services, the fixed internet services and the provision of post-paid mobile access.
“We are currently reviewing the terms of the sale agreement with an eye to finalising it and bringing it to completion,” he said. “Our intention is to minimise the inconvenience to ispONE customers wherever we can.”
A first meeting of creditors will be held on Thursday 29 August 2013.
Are you a Kogan or Aldi Mobile customer? Are you now looking around at other services.