Expert Speak

A Need to Co-opt Telecom, Convergence Products

Convergence Products

Selling IT products and solutions, especially the latter is not everyone�s cup of tea. It is a knowledge business although in its most rudimentary form of reselling, it is reduced to mere trading.

p____p But there is a line of distinction that separates the men from the boys. The guys who are in the business for the long haul know that they need to invest in new products and new solutions consistently to keep growing.

p____p I presume that a large percentage amongst you must be thinking of what next to sell. So I have this question for those who are interested in growing their businesses further: What stops you from investing in telecom products and convergence products? In other words, can the IT channel be used more proactively for pushing telecom products such as cell phones, prepaid phone cards and other accessories. This widens the portfolio of products that can earn you margins and revenues; so does this make sense? Besides, this could be the opportunity to be part of the communications revolution in India that is accelerating tremendously.

p____p After all if convergence is what we are heading for, then why do we need a separate channel to sell telecom products and IT products? I believe that in some more developed economies, this distinction is not there.

p____p A learned friend of mine persists in convincing me that in Australia, the IT industry is referred more commonly as the ICT (Information and Communications Technology). However, in India, the channels for the two industries are distinct although some resellers in Nehru Place or Lamington Road may trade in cell phones. That is a tactical move more than a strategy. It is better to do this as a clear strategy.

p____p Now what can you as IT resellers offer the telecom product vendors? Can you convince some of your existing customers to buy a telecom product/service that you are offering? Do you think that you have a better chance to sell the product/service than the guy who is also selling �Playwin� lotteries, besides a host of other unrelated products or services? I believe so.

p____p I agree with my learned friend, who himself has experience in the industry that the channel must co-opt other convergence products as well as the office automation (which is happening now with the multi-functional devices). This is the way to grow. This is what will stand the men in good stead.

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