I hope you’re enjoying the new-look Mobile, particularly our new section focusing on the b2b sector.
B2b has thrown up some interesting and new opportunities for the industry – growth in the accessories market and the services that revolve around the traditional handset have proved to be great revenue drivers for the sector. Insurance and recycling are also becoming areas of growth with many dealers and distributors developing their own direct communication channels in the shape of specific services micro sites.
The sector is increasingly becoming more attractive to non-traditional b2b businesses with more and more plotting to move into that space. Look at traditional retailer Fonehouse, which has been around for more than 15 years. It has now decided to launch into unified comms as part of a wider strategy that will see more than 40 stores offering b2b services by the end of next year. Who would have thought Fonehouse will be offering mobile, fixed-line, broadband and cloud services a few years ago? It’s a testimony to the changes that are taking place in the mobile industry.
Fonehouse group chairman Clive Bayley tells Mobile how b2b is gaining momentum and how a lot of its partners are now taking on dedicated b2b experienced staff to help drive the shift.Bayley says it is using the trust it has built up as a retailer to now target the business market.
A1 Comms is another example of a retailer that has taken on more b2b work, especially with operator EE, and in particular taking on more and more business connections. A1 Comm’s commercial director Stuart Joce told us about targeting new markets with plans to open Go Mobile franchise stores in areas outside of its traditional base.
And, of course, recently the largest independent retailer Carphone Warehouse has also strengthened its business offerings. It reveals the continued buoyancy in the b2b sector, which is now helping considerably to drive the mobile market, not just with retailers but also with operators too.Certainly an interesting sector to be analysing.