Vodafone is to open 150 shops and create 1400 jobs in a £100m retail push as it reinvests some of the proceeds of its £80bn windfall from the sale of its Verizon Wireless stake.
Britain’s third biggest mobile operator by customers, behind EE and O2, claimed its annual investment in Britain will reach a record £1bn this year as it is also expanding its new 4G super-fast network.
Vodafone’s UK boss Jeroen Hoencamp said its 19 million customers wanted access to Vodafone “right at the heart of their high street and shopping centre” despite the rise of online shopping.
The new stores would improve Vodafone’s “ability to serve our customers better with highly skilled personal advice”, he said.
Vodafone has come under fire for paying zero corporation tax in the UK in the last two years as it has claimed tax allowances for its capital investment, but it maintains it pays millions in other indirect taxes.
David Cameron welcomed the £100m investment as “a fantastic vote of confidence in the UK workforce”.