Welcomm in double swoop


B2B dealer Welcomm Communications completed a double scoop this month, after investing heavily into a mobile software developer and securing an exclusive distribution deal with smartphone, scanner and printing manufacturer Opticon.

Leicestershire-based Welcomm, a member of the O2 Centre of Excellence, purchased Sheffield-based software developer Skynet Technologies Network (STN) this month for an undisclosed fee.

STN has been developing a Sage mobile software solution for businesses called ‘In Motion’ for the past four years, which when installed to a smartphone handset, provides the ability to communicate directly with a work server via GPRS, 3G or Wi-Fi.

The Sage mobile application, which can be installed on to a number of smartphone devices, will provide the ability for employees to make any secure transaction or delivery in the field, with the information being received in real time to the office computer.

Welcomm is also in the process of launching this service together with an exclusive distribution deal in the UK, with Opticon, which manufactures Windows Mobile 5 smartphones with built-in bar code readers and scanners.

Welcomm is also stocking a number of mini Opticon printers which link to the handset, enabling a receipt to be given on the spot for any sale or delivery confirmation.

Welcomm Communications chairman Chris Stanton (pictured) said: “We saw a lot of openings for this type of product in the market. It allows sales people to go out in the field with a PDA and ‘look’ in to their back-office system live, do a sale and print off the invoice straight away.

They can do everything from their mobile – they don’t have to go out again to get paperwork signed and issue an invoice later. It’s all done from the handset in one go, live and real time. Mobile dealers will love it, it’s an exclusive product and it will help to build up ARPU.

“This product opens the doors to big companies. As well as this product, we will try to get their mobile deals as well.”

Welcomm has also confirmed its intention to increase its mobile business base by acquiring up to six independent mobile phone dealers in the next two years.

“We have never done anything like this before. We either want to buy someone out lock stock and barrel or heavily invest. We will be doing it this year, and over the next two years we expects between six and ten, and looking for a deal which will have between one and three thousand customers each.”