Annodata claims that service providers are facing even more challenges as customers ‘become
more aware of diversification’.
Stuart McAlpine, head of communications, explained to Mobile that it is becoming more evident that companies need to be multi-faceted and capable of offering a plethora of mobile solutions.
He said: ‘Customers are becoming more and more aware of diversification; that’s where we see growth. I think IT directors across the board very much want to have a partner that is multi-faceted rather than have multiple layers across an organisation. Over the past 10 years that has started to become more evident, and Annodata is positioned to take that place in the market.
‘We offer a breadth of solutions that IT directors can see as credible and more flexible. I think the challenges that most comms dealers will have is that you’ve got to invest in the infrastructure behind the scenes to be able to deliver and employ that. It’s all about how quickly they can do it and that’s the challenge, a single service provider will now have more challenges from an IT incumbent or a mobile incumbent to wrap these services up in a more manageable package.’
The unified comms dealer’s strategy to offer a number of different services is putting the company on target to become a £100m business by 2016. McAlpine explained that its growth strategy involves targeting IT and UC revenue streams: ‘We have a £100m company goal – part of the growth strategy is to look at the whole IT and UC revenue streams and make sure they are growing.
‘In the past year we’ve made successful acquisitions in the IT and wide format print arena and those acquisitions have helped to broaden our strength of offerings to the market, diversifying and having more strength in the IT arena. It helps us drive managed service business revenues into the company and we are on track in terms of growth.
‘There has been some acquisitive growth but we’re very much focused on organic growth. We have a large client base with a wallet share that we are more than capable of attracting, so we’re looking to cross sell all our products and make our clients aware of increasing diversity of products.’
Despite the push for diversification, the O2 direct partner network award winner is still looking to grow the mobile side of the business. McAlpine explained that in an industry such as mobile, differentiation is everything and working with O2 helps set them apart.
He said: ‘There are two partner awards that were brought to the channel for the first time – the customer excellence and the digital excellence award – and we are one of a handful of UK dealers that achieved both. It shows that as a business partner Annodata and O2 are strategically aligned. We believe we’re working towards a continued growth period and it increases our credibility in that particular mobile space.
‘In terms of mobile, we still compete directly for mobile business wins. It’s a competitive market and it’s important that customers looking to partner with a new mobile supplier see someone with a track record of providing customer excellence and value for money, it’s important that we differentiate ourselves in that space. Annodata’s aim is not to be a singular provider of one service, our aim is that mobility is just part of a suite of products.
‘This ranges across mobile, telephony, IT elements and our core strength in the digital print market, which crosses into mobile. So mobile devices is pivotal within the UC and print solutions. It’s a case of what the priority is and how it fits into the general IT strategy of the business. Mobile is part of most customers’ IT strategy. It will always encompass mobile but it’s becoming a key part of it now because of the integration of UC.
‘I think the whole UC market and convergence is making sure IT directors have a partner that’s got a broader spectrum of capabilities and whether that’s telephony or IT or data or print, we have the option to supply elements individually and then grow the relationship from there.’