A lesson from Inclarity Managing Director Enzo Viscito: Don't be wholly enmeshed in your quest for differentiation - be visionary, flexible and pioneering.
The story of Inclarity is characterised by a strategic pursual of being at the forefront. The strength of Inclarity's outlook is always to play the long game in a fast moving industry where cards are being shuffled by the day, evidenced by its early move into the hosted space. The company claims to be the UK's first IP Centrex provider offering VoIP services in 2003 with a switch running MGCP protocols. This pioneering spirit is clearly reflected in last month's launch of LifeTime licenses which gives partners who purchase them permanent right of use - a potent weapon in a reseller's hosted armoury.
"When purchased these licenses will become the property of the Inclarity channel partner, enabling reuse at the end of each customer term," said Viscito. "Each license gives the user full access to all subscriber features on the Inclarity BroadWorks platform. They can be used with any type of supported handset or soft phone and any of Inclarity's bolt-on advanced features and services. As LifeTime Licenses are open ended they will allow Inclarity's partners to significantly increase their mid to long-term margins as they will typically sell them as a SaaS-based monthly subscription model."
Inclarity has also added the full range of Polycom VVX handsets to its VoIP telephony bundles. "We are offering our channel the widest choice of Polycom VVX business media phones, along with the internationally recognised BroadSoft Enterprise License and virtually unlimited minutes," explained Viscito. "To help resellers sell our bundles we include number porting, DDI numbers and a quick migration turnaround."
The introduction of LifeTime licenses and the Polycom bundle launch both illustrate Inclarity's method of working collaboratively with channel partners while prioritising an innate flexibility that was clear to see even when the company was established in 1991 and awarded an independent telco license. At first Inclarity was a player in the prepaid long distance calling card business but in 2001 it evolved into a voice and data services provider offering not only hosted telecoms but also satellite communications.
The business launched a suite of satellite earth stations in 2003 directly connecting Inclarity's London-based technical centre to the Middle East, Europe and North Africa, allowing the firm to offer its voice and data services at substantially reduced costs to customers worldwide. "However, it was the hosted voice side of the business that survived," stated Viscito.
In 2008 Inclarity set up its channel reseller programme (some early partners are still with the firm). A move to the BroadSoft platform followed in 2010 along with a significant investment in BroadWorks licenses. "We continually invest in the stability of the service, having virtualised the entire network in 2014 and this year virtualising SBCs to provide maximum performance," added Viscito.
He joined Inclarity as Managing Director in 2007 and has been instrumental in moulding the business with a trademark Mediterranean passion that is well known within the industry. This passion helps him to foster strong partner relationships which are augmented by account management, marketing services and pre-sales support. "Inclarity is not the biggest provider of hosted telephony in the UK but it has a personality not seen in larger new entrants to the market," commented Viscito. "This is partly due to our experience coupled with our sole focus on the provision of hosted voice, UC and connectivity services. We have a loyal partner base, some of whom have been with us for more than a decade."
The investments into Inclarity's network have paid off with ‘non-down time' for many years. Furthermore, Inclarity's partners experience less than a one per cent customer churn rate on average as they also benefit from a UK-based 24x7 customer help-desk that answers support calls within four seconds.
"When it comes to the make-up of services offered to partners flexibility is at the forefront," said Viscito. "We start with standard licenses and 24x7 customer support, softphone bundles, up to a choice of the full range of VVX media phones in a bundle format including the ability to mix VVX models within a customer environment. It is our agile systems that facilitate this level of flexibility."