A broader sales team and the addition of a number of new partnerships contributed to a 25% growth in Tech Data Mobile’s telecoms customer base, says the distributor’s UK and Ireland MD PeterHubbard (pictured): ‘In the past year our telecom base grew by 25% and our resellers were up 85% –that’s from the broader sales teams being able to sell the service. We brought on some new partners – Lumia, Alcatel and Huawei – and we’ll have another three or four in the coming months. We have great relationships with Motorola and Samsung. We have a robust vendor lineup and we believe that our broader customer base will benefit from a broader product line.
‘It is no longer just about just supplying products; we are expected to train resellers, and we cover areas such as compatibility and mobility. We run a programme called Tech Select, with bite-sized programmes of around 15 minutes, which are a manageable commitment.’
Another company that has seen significant growth in the b2b mobile space is Microsoft; in September the manufacturer’s business sales director Adrian Williams told Mobile that sales had doubled in the last six months of 2014 and he expected the same to happen in the first half of 2015.
Tech Data Mobile was also delighted with Microsoft’s figures; the firm was added to the Lumia distributor stable in the summer with a brief of reaching the IT market. For Peter Hubbard, the success of Microsoft’s devices was part of a larger strategy: ‘Our ultimate goal is that the Microsoft environment can be served end-to-end with all the infrastructure elements with a large team of architects designing a complete mobile solution. We won the Microsoft distributor of the year award for 2014 and we’ve been a key partner of theirs for some time. Introducing Microsoft training programmes this year was a straightforward, but strategic move for us.
Another partner that Hubbard stressed was very much a part of Tech Data Mobile’s future plans is Samsung: ‘There has been a lot of change at Samsung in the UK, we meet with them regularly and we see only an upside about working with the company across a broad range of technologies. We are one of the key, if not the key partners for go-to-market in the UK.’
Hubbard explained that the brand was looking to extend its services to provide an all-encompassing solution for customers: ‘Our service-led proposition is about managing and driving a supply chain for customers in a more effective and efficient way. This can be used to help existing large multinationals as well as new companies in supporting a supply chain. For example, when we have a few thousand phones delivered to the company, they are loaded with corporate apps, and we can deliver devices to employees’ homes. It’s all about trying to remove the complexity and having simple solutions for big problems so that companies can do what they do best – bring products to market.
‘The market’s changing; previously the mobile phone was sold separately, now it’s part of the IT infrastructure. We were well positioned to sell into businesses that way, so it’s been a year of extending our reach into the market and creating deeper relationships.’