UK mobile phone specialist Phones 4u and a number of its associated businesses - including MVNO Life Mobile - have gone into administration today. The company says it follows the decisions of Vodafone and then EE not to renew their network agreements, which represented over 90% of all connections it made.
According to a statement, “there is no reasonable prospect of avoiding insolvent liquidation” which means Phones 4u has cased trading and been placed in administration.
Phones 4u operates 550 stores along with a number of other in-store concessions. It employs 5,596 people and generates an annual turnover of over £1 billion. The shops will remain closed until the administrators make a decision about the future of the business.
David Kassler, Chief Executive of Phones 4u, said “Today is a very sad day for our customers and our staff. If the mobile network operators decline to supply us, we do not have a business. A good company making profits of over £100 million, employing thousands of decent people has been forced into administration. The great service we have provided should have guaranteed a strong future, but unfortunately our network partners have decided otherwise. The ultimate result will be less competition, less choice and higher prices for mobile customers in UK.”
Phones 4u co-founder and former CEO John Caudwell, who sold the business in 2006 for £1.47 billion, said on Twitter that he was “sickened and saddened” for the company’s employees.