I see in one of the British newspapers that the chairman of Telefónica aspires to make it the world’s top digital communications company. Even worse, he believes that, wherever you go in the world, the recipe for business success stays very much the same. I guess he means that all you have to do is capture your customers, tie them up and then bleed them dry. But if he does achieve his ambition, I wonder if it will make it less or more likely I’ll ever get a land line for our house in the hills behind Pontevedra.
Here in the UK, I ordered a new mirror for my car via the internet today. Within a couple of minutes I’d received confirmation of its despatch. Which is impressive. Unless, of course, it’s a phoney operation and my bank account has just been cleaned out. Which, in its own way, would also be impressive. I guess.
It was much the same story with Brittany Ferries, when I contacted them to change my return booking. Within seconds, I’d received the revised travel schedule by email. Credit where credit’s due, I always say. And vice versa. But it is a little startling to have service of such rapidity. As I keep saying, perhaps the recession will force a re-think about customer service on the part of Spanish companies. Though not Telefónica, obviously. The chairman clearly thinks he's on to a winning formula.
Finally . . . The latest data on foreigners living in the Pontevedra province of Galicia reveals there are now 3,200 of us, with 90% living in the cities. The principal countries of origin are the usual suspects - Colombia, Brazil, Portugal, Morocco, Venezuela, Argentina, Ecuador, Uruguay, Rumania, Senegal and, of course, China. Countries providing fewer than a hundred immigrants are Italy, Paraguay, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Peru and France. For fewer than 50, it’s Germany, Bangladesh, the USA, the UK (22) and Mexico. Then Nepal, Japan, Korea, Israel, India, Egypt, Byelorussia and, finally, Ireland. Which provides, we’re told, just one soul. So, when it comes to Anglo and Teutonic ghettoes, nothing like the Costa del Sol, the Costa Brava, the Canaries or the Balearic Islands. Which probably has come negative connotations but I can’t think of them right now.