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free

Free

Company: Iliad Group

Brand Value: US$ 2,603 million

Change since 2018: -10%

Headquarter City: Paris

Category: Telecom Providers

Year Formed: 1999

Free is approaching its 20th anniversary but is still seen as a challenger brand in a highly competitive category. It entered the category in 1999 with its now-famous Free Box, but really started shaking things up in 2012 when it launched mobile phone services, leading other providers to review their packages and launch lower-cost networks. Free has 13.7 mobile subscribers and 6.5 million broadband customers. The brand competed primarily on price in its early days, but now differentiates itself based on innovation. A new set-top box was due for launch in September this year, as part of a more premium-style service bundle and a higher price than Free has previously charged. The move followed disappointing results in Q1 2018, when Free experienced a decline in broadband customers for the first time. A new CEO, Thomas Reynaud, was appointed in May, and Free has since adjusted its broadband offering and launched a range of high-profile promotions. Free’s tagline is “Merci Free” or “Thank you, Free”.

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