Daisy Wholesale has launched a major push into mobile after inking a deal with Vodafone to offer a Sim-only mobile proposition to its base of 1,200 resellers.
The mobile deal, launched this month, offers Daisy Wholesale’s resellers a wholesale monthly Sim-only deal on to which they can bolt on unlimited calls and data.
The move is part of a wider drive to grow Daisy’s wholesale business this year, which will see it and in-house rival O-bit fully merged. Newly acquired IT and data specialist Netcrowd will also be developed into a professional services division of Daisy Wholesale. The wholesale division is also planning to widen its partner base outside of its traditional fixed and IT reseller base.
Daisy Wholesale’s drive for growth is being led by its new MD Terry O’Brien. O’Brien joined Daisy Group in May 2011 from Vodafone, where he was head of retail. He took on the role of Daisy Group commercial director with the task of integrating Daisy’s five mobile acquisitions. In September last year he was made MD of Daisy Wholesale, with a brief to integrate the two wholesale businesses, build out a professional services division and drive growth.
Speaking to Mobile, O’Brien said the Sim-only deal with Vodafone was designed to suit Daisy Wholesale resellers, who, as fixed line and IT specialists, are unfamiliar with mobile tariffs. He said: ‘When I joined Daisy Wholesale mobile was not getting real traction. We had no more than 30 partners at best trying to do mobile. The problem was the way mobile was put to the wholesale channel. It was based on the way the mobile world worked rather than the other way round. It was really complex with myriad tariffs, a commission model they didn’t understand, small margins and a lot of credit risk.’
He added: ‘What we have introduced is a really simple model offering only one tariff under a Sim-only, 30 day deal with the option of adding unlimited calls and data. So it’s very simple, there is very little ongoing risk and it is a proper wholesale model. All our partners have to do is decide what they want to charge for it.’
O’Brien said interest in the Sim-only proposition has been strong since its soft launch at the start of May. He predicted at least 200 partners will take up the proposition by the end of the year, based on current enquiries. He said: ‘If you are a reseller you know that if you don’t get into mobile someone else will and they will likely take your lines, call and broadband business too. So our partners need it defensively and have for some time, but have been stuck between a rock and a hard place because mobile has been so complex until now.’
Daisy Wholesale will also continue to offer mobile services from O2, which are based on the revenue share model.
The business is also on a cross-selling drive as it increases its portfolio of products. O’Brien said: ‘Most of our partners currently sell two to three products, but in the coming year we want to increase that to three or four products and services this year as we increase our offering of competitive mobile and professional services.’
O’Brien is also on the look-out for new partners, both from its traditional fixed line and IT markets and from new markets. Three quarters of Daisy Wholesale’s partners are fixed line resellers, with the rest largely IT. Now the company is turning its sights on larger partners from vertical markets. O’Brien said: ‘We take on around 10 to 15 new partners a month from our traditional markets, but we are also looking for large partners with large bases that we can work with on a more strategic level to help them enter the telecoms space.’
He added: ‘We are working on four or five significant opportunities – not all of them are existing communications providers. We are looking at opportunities in sectors such as IT, energy and education.’
Author: Carol Millett