MVNA Gamma Mobile has seen explosive growth over the past 12 months, with both revenues and mobile connections up by over 100% and MVNO partner numbers more than doubling to over 100 partners.
The MVNA, which was launched in July 2011 with just 35 MVNO partners, is predicting strong growth this year, with revenues set to increase by 25% this quarter. The MVNA also plans to take on up to 40 new MVNO partners this year.
So what is driving growth and can it be sustained? Head of mobile services, Rob Davis, says Gamma’s 500-plus partner base makes fertile ground for expansion for its mobile division. ‘We have 103 MVNO partners with about 90% drawn from our partner base, so there’s lots more room for growth there,’ he says.
The continuing shift from fixed line to mobile is another key driver. ‘Ofcom figures show that over 70% of all business calls are now on mobiles. Those figures are fairly stark. Fixed line resellers are recognising that strategically they have to start selling mobile,’ he says.
But isn’t mobile a sell too far for many of Gamma’s fixed line partners? ‘It is a hard sell for traditional fixed line sales teams,’ Davis says. ‘But we try to make it as easy as possible – as an MVNO they use the same portal, and we make it easy to convert the billing system and they keep the same model of customer ownership.’
Gamma is also targeting new partners this year via a simplified MVNO partnership – Gamma Mobile with Simplicity – which offers a full billing service and very simple tariff structures. It was inspired by feedback from IT services resellers and smaller mobile dealers looking for the flexibility of an MVNO partnership without the complexity of running their own billing services.
Davis says: ‘It’s for people who don’t want the hassle of doing their own billing or who don’t have the skills. It is a great way to start. We see it as a route to getting more partners onboard.’
Interest has been strong since its launch last month, Davis says. ‘There’s an untapped market out there. We have already signed up two new Simplicity Mobile MVNO partners and there is a lot of interest.’
Although the MVNA is keen to increase partner numbers, Davis says this will not be at the expense of its existing MVNO partner base. ‘We don’t have aspirations to grow the base hugely,’ he says. ‘If we add another 20 to 40 partners this year we will be pleased, because we see growth every quarter from our existing MVNO partners and we are keen to support that.’
To this end Gamma Mobile holds a number of educational roadshows each year, as well as webinars and marketing events to help drive partners’ mobile sales. It has also increased its specialist mobile sales team, bringing on three new staff to support its MVNO partners.
Davis says: ‘Our view is that if we can help our partners to be successful then we will be successful.’
Author: Carol Millett