International mobile operator AwayPhone has continued the drive to expand its sales partner network, signing a new distributor deal with Hugh Symons Communications Ltd, part of the Carphone Warehouse Group plc, Europe’s large independent mobile phone retailer.
The agreement will provide Hugh Symons’ resellers with an additional revenue stream in the form of a value-added service that is straightforward to add on immediately to customers’ contracts. It will also provide AwayPhone with increased access to its target B2B audience.
Launched in 2006 to provide roaming services denied by the major telecoms companies, AwayPhone has quickly established itself as an international mobile operator for global travellers. The SIM-only contract solution reduces call costs by up to 90 percent and assists with building relationships by providing users with a local number in the region visited Operational in 78 countries it goes beyond the EU’s remit to cap roaming charges, which is only effective in Europe.
“AwayPhone’s service provides our resellers with an additional touchpoint for their customers, which helps them maintain dialogues with them, regardless of where they are in the contract life-cycle,’ comments Carlos Pestana, sales manager at Hugh Symons. “In a mature market, where the opportunities to provide end users with genuinely new and useful offerings are limited, this is invaluable. It is also hard evidence that we have taken to heart our role in reducing mobile roaming fees for end-users.”
The deal with Hugh Symons Communications will see AwayPhone action its industry policy to pass on, where possible, a proportion of end users’ call costs to the reseller, in addition to a fixed sum for the customer win. This facilitates an ongoing revenue stream for resellers, rather than the one-off contract fee often awarded by other operators.
Sherry Madera, CEO of AwayPhone, explains: “We believe that it is important to build long term relationships and ongoing partnerships throughout the channel. In addition to providing resellers with more contact opportunities with their end-users, we also ensure that all of our partners share in our success, in recognition of the importance we place on the strong relationships they have built up with their customers. The deal with Hugh Symons, with its strong reputation throughout the mobile industry, reflects this philosophy.”
AwayPhone’s agreement with Hugh Symons follows the deal it announced with Dextra in June 2007. Madera confirms: “The EU may have legally capped roaming fees but in reality this will take some time to come in to force fully and, even when it does, will not protect customers from rip-off roaming fees outside Europe. As a result, there is a real and growing demand for our service. The best way to meet that is via the expertise of channel partners and we are therefore committed to a business strategy that reflects this.”