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PlanetOne Celebrates Growth, Preps to Add Verizon, TelePacific to Portfolio

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Edward GatelyMaster agent PlanetOne Communications is capping off the biggest year in its nearly 25-year history with high-dollar deals moving faster than ever.

That was the word from PlanetOne CEO Ted Schuman, who on Thursday addressed more than 200 attendees – including more than 20 preferred partners – at the company’s Year-End Event in Scottsdale, Arizona. Stressing collaboration and partner support, the theme of the event was “Never Fly Solo.”

“I measure based off the company’s financial statements, and we’re going to finish the year up about 22-24 percent over our net growth of last year,” said Schuman. “That number, although from a percentage standpoint doesn’t sound astronomically high – given the size of our company and the revenue – we’ve very proud of that accomplishment.”

On stage Thursday at PlanetOne's Year-End Event in Scottsdale, Arizona, PlanetOne CEO Ted Schuman talks about some BIG deals.Collaboration with partners and suppliers selling an “end-to-end solution” has fueled this year’s growth, he said.

“Historically, we used to live almost exclusively in the connectivity world, and today we’re selling IT services as convergences take place that weren’t even available to us, so we never even thought to sell, nor did our customers come to us to source those types of products in the past,” Schuman said. “Our average revenue per order, which is what’s moving the revenue needle, is up significantly year over year for really around five or six years straight.”

The overall product mix that PlanetOne is selling is changing, he said.

“We’re now collaborating with vendors, VARs and MSPs around the country in selling those services and going to market together,” Schuman said.

Next year, PlanetOne is adding Aryaka, Equinix, Datapipe, TelePacific and Verizon to its portfolio, he said.

“As the convergence of products takes place, where we’re selling more cloud-based solutions for the customer, the distribution model has changed as well,” Schuman said. “So we’re selling a much wider footprint today to a very large audience that did not exist three to five years ago in our world. But we made the pivot early, we saw it coming, we’d been talking about it, and trying to educate and enable all of our partners to make that fundamental shift in their business. Three to four years ago is when we made the conscious effort internally and now you’re seeing some of the success take place in the market because we were early adopters.”{ad}

As for the near-constant M&A in the channel, Schuman said he’s “excited” for mergers when the partnerships make sense strategically.

“Sometimes they make us raise our eyebrows and question what …

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… the driver is behind the scenes, what the basis of the union was,” he said. “So we just have to continue to adapt and make sure we’re well-positioned to take advantage of those new relationships.”

Schuman said he gets approached by potential buyers “all the time; I have for several years now … but we are not for sale.”

Randy Fine, Fine Telecommunications’ CEO, said his company has been a PlanetOne partner for about five to six years, and that “with their expansion, we’ve expanded.”

“They’ve kept everything very family-oriented; it’s not such a big shop,” he said. “It is becoming bigger, but hopefully we can keep that nice family-oriented comfort feeling.”{ad}

Davin Roos, ASG’s principal and vice president of sales, said his company has been a PlanetOne partner since 2002 and every single year PlanetOne has been growing.

“They’ve taken on the cloud services, which is a huge step, and everything is moving in that direction anyway,” he said. “So to actually have a master agent like PlanetOne embracing it and helping to assist us with everything we need, and the tools, is great. They’re always there for you; they uncover the opportunities and they work with you, and it’s been a huge success for not just them, but also for our company. We’ve been growing at the same pace with them all along.”


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