Business ISP AltoHiway is offering exclusive rights to sell its uncontended Symmetric Digital Subscriber Line (SDSL) broadband offering in up to 400 exchanges.
“Resellers will need to commit between £600 and £1,000 per exchange,” said Chris Wood, sales and marketing manager at AltoHiway.
“In return, we will not prospect into that area. For us, this is about growing the business and attracting good resellers.”
Resellers will need to buy a customer list, prepared and filtered by the ISP from a third-party database firm, and use telemarketing to qualify leads. In return for the investment, AltoHiway claims it will not compete with the reseller in that exchange area.
“We all know what is happening in the Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) market, where business [customer] growth has slowed to almost nothing. Consequently, prices and margins are down to almost nothing,” Wood said.
AltoHiway is one of a select bunch – including Easynet and Bulldog – to embrace local loop unbundling. It expects to be able to offer both 10:1 contended and, more unusually, uncontended SDSL lines from 400 exchanges, covering 30 per cent of businesses in the UK, from the end of June.
“Resellers now stand on a base of ADSL customers,” Wood claimed. “They can make more margin from SDSL sales. Customers who originally had ISDN or leased lines went for ADSL primarily because it was the cheaper option.
“Now resellers have two opportunities. First, there are the customers that had leased lines but took the disadvantages of DSL on the chin because it was the cheaper option. Second, there are firms that went to ADSL but are now facing more demand for upstream bandwidth.”
Simon Darlington, managing director of LSI, a reseller based in the West Country, said: “If it’s uncontended SDSL and the price is right, then it’s a massive market. Lots of businesses are now using ADSL, and SDSL is the best thing for that application.
“I would ask how exclusive such a deal is. You could end up competing against the big [ISP] players.”
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