3’s B2B division will cut a number of indirect channel partners in April to focus on an elite few “strategic partners”.
3 head of business sales Paul Foley declined to comment on how many partners it will cut, but said 3’s strategy is to work closely with six key distributors and large dealers.
It has announced distributors Fone Logistics and HSC as two of its strategic partners, and will announce a further three partners by the end of the quarter, with another to be announced thereafter.
It currently works with airtime distributors Anglia Telecom Centres, Avenir Telecom and MoCo.
Foley said the reason to remove dealers and distributors is to focus on providing a high quality service to fewer partners.
“We always said we will only work with a handful of partners,” said Foley. “We will disengage with some of our partners to work more closely with key businesses as our business model is based on providing a value added service. We can’t provide high quality service if we are working with too many people.
“Strategic partners will receive added back office support from us including credit, commission and marketing support.”
Foley said 3 will continue to put more emphasis on its consumer propositions, but said its B2B arm has grown “significantly” this year, picking up better quality end users.
“We know we are not the biggest player in the B2B space. But, there is significant growth in 3’s B2B sales and it is gaining considerable traction in the quality of business. Quality to us means people who spend more and stay on the network for longer.”
3’s B2B arm recruited six channel managers in January to support its dealers and distributors.