Vodafone is offering all small businesses in the UK free broadband for 2021 in response to ongoing lockdown restrictions.
Thousands of workers across the country are currently still working from home as a result of the pandemic, meaning there is an increased reliance on internet access.
Who is eligible?
The network operator has said that all firms with between one and 50 employees will be able to apply for the new scheme, including existing Vodafone customers who are eligible to upgrade.
Those who take up the offer will receive free broadband as part of a 36-month plan.
The cost will then refer to the standard rate of either £22.50 or £25 per month, excluding VAT, after the first free 12 months, depending on the broadband package that is selected.
Vodafone has also confirmed that the scheme includes a one-time £20 fee to cover setup costs, but said there would be no further payment required until the thirteenth month of the contract.
Help for small businesses
The launch of the scheme comes as Vodafone published research from Enterprise Nation which found that 71 per cent of small businesses said they are now more reliant than ever on broadband, due to social distancing measures forcing firms online.
The number of small businesses running entirely online has doubled during the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the research.
Anne Sheehan, business director at Vodafone UK, said: “The message to small businesses is clear: we’re here to help.
“Businesses need to be running as efficiently as possible in 2021 – that means getting online, using the best digital tools, getting the best business advice, and spending as little money as possible.
“It’s great to see how businesses adapted throughout last year, and we’re here to help more do the same in 2021.”