connection telecomConnection Telecom, the leading cloud-based PBX/call centre provider, has acquired FatBudgie, itself a cloud PBX provider for business and a market leader in the SMME/SOHO segment. David Meintjes, Connection Telecom MD, says the transaction increases the number of extensions serviced by the Telviva and FatBudgie PBX brands, to 34 000 users in over 2 000 sites. The combined growth rate of the brands is expected to continue to exceed 50% year-on-year, as both entities are well placed to service market demand.

One company, two brands
Both will continue to trade under their respective service brands and maintain their own customer bases.
Meintjes says the move is part of Connection Telecom’s growth strategy, involving expansion of its market focus into new segments. “The Telviva brand is primarily focused on medium to large business customers with a requirement for managed network access, whereas the FatBudgie brand is primarily geared to the provision of voice services over unmanaged, less expensive connectivity, largely utilised in the small business environment,” he says.

Sacha Matulovich, FatBudgie MD, says the company has already outsourced its voice platform to Connection Telecom (CTEL), to take advantage of its’s more sophisticated core environment, multiple carrier agreements and network redundancy.

“What’s more, our customers can now call thousands of Connection Telecom customers for free,” says Matulovich when he describes the concept of the Free Calling Community being steered by Connection Telecom. The move will further enable FatBudgie to continue to use its existing access networks, whilst expanding and improving its product set with cloud-based videoconferencing, hosted contact centre and business intelligence products.

The Connection Telecom core infrastructure is provided from two data centres, to ensure higher service levels. FatBudgie now also has the benefit of Connection Telecom’s engineering resources, which will aid it in its technical customer support and new product innovation.

New energy
Matulovich has been very successful in carving out a growth path for FatBudgie over the last three years, and is respected as an energetic marketer with a customer-centric approach. He brings great customer experience and brand building to the Connection Telecom stable, and in addition to being CEO of the FatBudgie business, will also head up sales and marketing at Connection Telecom.

Consolidating market leadership
Meintjes says the acquisition serves to cement Connection Telecom’s market leadership position in cloud-based communication. In addition, Connection Telecom will continue to target other companies like FatBudgie, to which virtualising services over an existing network would make sense. Connection Telecom currently has three large network players that have virtualised services in this manner.

“Market consolidation hasn’t happened to any great degree elsewhere in the local market, but we believe that more PBX service companies would embrace the virtualised service model.”

About Connection Telecom
Connection Telecom was founded in 2004 as a pioneering, independent provider of proven carrier-grade IP PBX solutions to Southern African businesses. The company’s team boasts more than 150 years in collective telecommunication experience. Connection Telecom offers solutions and services based on the Telviva family of enterprise PBXs and other products aimed at enterprise customers, smaller businesses and vertical industry applications. Feature-rich, managed and open, these solutions allow freedom of choice in handsets and add-ons, a low total cost of ownership and call cost savings of up to 40%. The company has offices in Cape Town and Johannesburg with on-site support in 28 locations. Its major clients include First National Bank, Old Mutual Finance, Engen Petroleum, FNB, Lewis, RMB Asset Management, UCS,Fat Budgie and Vox Telecom. For more information please visit: www.connection-telecom.com.

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