In what it euphemistically described as "a strategic shift in its marketing and sponsorship spending" Vodafone said it would not renew its sponsorship of Cricket Australia when its current contract comes to an end in March 2013. The 2012/13 season will be the last under Vodafone sponsorship.
Vodafone also announced that it had reached the end of its TeamVodafone sponsorship agreement and did not plan to renew the sponsorship at the end of the 2012 V8 Supercar Championship. However, Vodafone said it "continues to explore ongoing sponsorship opportunities with Triple Eight Race Engineering, Craig Lowndes and Jamie Whincup."
Vodafone's Consumer Business Unit director, Noel Hamill, said: "Our sponsorship of the Australian Test Cricket Team has delivered exceptional value and great experiences to many of our customers, so the decision to conclude the sponsorship at the end of the 2012/13 summer has not been taken lightly. We feel that it's best to refocus our investment and attention on delivering the best possible network and service experience to our customers."
He added: "We've been fortunate to be the major sponsor of the Australian Test Cricket Team during an era that has featured some of the true greats of the game, including the Waugh brothers, Warne, McGrath, Gilly, Ponting, and Michael Clarke. We wish the team every success in the future."
According to financial figures released by HTA, the ASX-listed 50 percent shareholder of VHA, VHA incurred a $335.4m loss in the 12 months to 31 December 2011, compared with a profit of $146.8m in the corresponding period last year. Service revenue was $2408.4m, down 7.1 percent and EBITDA $625.4m, down 34.3 percent. VHA's customer numbers fell in the six months to 31 December to 6.724 million customers from 6.838 million six months earlier.
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