Fonehouse eyes SOHO market


Fonehouse hopes to enter the lower end of the business market before the end of the year, giving franchise partners the opportunity to sell 1-10 handset deals to local businesses.

It would be the first time the company has attempted to sell B2B deals but the retailer is in no immediate rush  to venture into the market and is instead aiming to be ready for what it thinks will be an upturn in the economy next year, where businesses will be more inclined to spend money.

Fonehouse managing director Clive Bayley (pictured) said: “We will view getting into the business market but on the 1-10 handset level as opposed to chasing 50 handset deals, so our partners can provide solutions for local businesses in their community. A few of our partners have expressed an interest in doing this.

“I’d like to launch that before the end of the year but I’ll only kick that off once we’ve absolutely ironed out what we need to do in that space. I haven’t got an exact date in mind for the launch as that would be pointless. You want to get it right and when it’s right, launch it carefully and then grow it. We don’t want to launch it and be unprepared.”

Bayley believes it is the ideal time to enter the small business market as he thinks the economy will start to recover next year following its recent difficulties and that businesses will be in a much better position to have more freedom with their budgets.

“Those that might have struggled recently will be in a position to spend more on their communication needs and splash out on up to 10 handsets,” he said.

“Business confidence is still not that high at present but it’s gradually improving.

“If we can enter that B2B market this year and be ready for what happens next year, then great. I expect the economy to recover next year but it will be a slow recovery and not too much will happen at once.”