Editor Ian Hunter speaks to Sachin Vaish, Managing Director of Manchester based network services company Vaioni, to find out what the opportunities and challenges are for his company in the coming year.
Sachin Vaish represents a new generation of entrepreneurs; a millennial that has staked his future on challenging the market status quo by coming up with innovative products and pricing. From a generation that was never criticised at school and where it was the rule that ‘no-one lost’ will he prove to be an ‘old school’ winner?
My first encounters with Vaish were soon after he established Vaioni back in 2008. He displayed a real passion for his business and his ways of doing things were the right way. Perhaps, even the only way. He was unshakable in his pursuit of success.
Today the company is seven years old and employs some 35 staff. What are their main activities and challenges?
Sachin Vaish: We have expanded out portfolio. Vaioni has developed probably the most powerful and extraordinary portfolio of connectivity services available anywhere in the UK. Our connectivity services focus on delivering Fibre Optic Carrier Ethernet technology, for single-site and multi-site solutions across the Globe. We are one of the only Carrier Ethernet connectivity focused providers in the UK, giving businesses access to the UK’s largest Aggregated Carrier Ethernet Fabric. We have bigger and better reach than any other provider because we interconnect with more Telco networks than anyone else – seven major and seven regional partners.
Additionally we offer WAN solutions, broadband and mobile, managed security, cloud and data centre services including Broadsoft based hosted telephony.
As a growing company our biggest concerns are those associated with recruitment; finding the right people to help us grow.
We have been very fortunate to have Andy Lockwood, the former Director of Transformation at TalkTalk Business, join us as a non-executive director where he can draw upon his skills in sales and operations to help us.
Today there is a battle being waged between price and good service. Our daily task is to convince resellers that good service has a price and to point out that in general the bigger an SP gets the poorer their service becomes. Too many deals are won on price alone and only later do resellers find out that the order was won at the expense of good service and reliable products. We have to win the argument that it is worth paying a little extra to get that service. If connectivity is critical to a business why would you buy on price?
Likewise we have to manage delivery expectations. It has become the norm for many SPs to quote 30 working days for delivery of services. This is just to get the business but not realistic and leads to disappointment for all concerned when the promise is not delivered.
Our ethos and mantra is to provide great service and products at a realistic price.
This extends throughout our business and includes our billing services where for the last 18-months we have been using our PRD Technologies Quick Start Pro platform.
Why invest in a new billing system if it is not going to improve your service levels? PRD understood that was what we wanted and made sure that was what they delivered in the form of an integrated and automated billing solution.
Since we began our channel wholesale operation nearly three years ago we have had a portal for pricing of services such as Ethernet. Now we are selling hosted telephony, accurate and timely billing has become critical for our business. Turning services on and off easily is one of the key benefits of hosted telephony and having a billing system that can measure and manage that process is vital if you are to produce accurate bills for resellers and their clients.
I mentioned before that we work with seven regional carrier partners as well as the major national players. Many of the regional players are classified as ‘unsupported’ by billing firms but PRD were able to integrate these companies in to our platform. Incrementally we will be developing these services with PRD in the future so that we can offer more to our channel partners.
Looking at that future it is my aim to further grow Vaioni and my target is to reach a turnover in excess of £20m in the next three to five years.