In this week’s podcast we interviewed Mark Finlayson, the managing director of Southampton-based business-to-business dealership Next Communications. Mark’s been in the mobile business for over 21 years… which is pretty impressive when you consider the UK’s cellular mobile phone networks launched less than 25 years ago.
In a very candid conversation, Iain Graham asked Mark what the secret of his success was.
“It was a bit of a shock when we realised it was 21 years; maybe it shows a lack of imagination! I think probably the secret of our success is that we have stayed small and personal. We’ve offered a ‘boutique’ service to our client base and have immense client loyalty as a result. Because of that focus, it probably has limited our growth slightly”.
After talking about his early days in business, Mark went on to explain how he thought the mobile industry would change in the next 12 months:
“I think we’re just about to see another complete reinvention of the industry in the next 12 months with the introduction of full ongoing revenue rather than up-front commission by all the networks eventually. And some people are going to find it difficult”.
As well as expecting changes to commission payments, Mark believes that Vodafone and O2 will have a much greater focus on fixed-line services in 2010. “It’s where all of their growth is going to come from; they’re not going to grow revenue other than by taking fixed-line business from the current players and combining it properly with the mobile product”.
You can hear the full interview in the second half of this week's podcast. It's available on the main page of our website, via our RSS podcast feed and on iTunes.