Mobi Hires Stewart, Launches Channel

Mobi Corp., a 15-year-old company with roots in the satellite optimization business, has rolled out its first channel program for a GPS-based fleet management solution.

The company hired longtime telecom channel executive Bob Stewart in June 2011 to develop and run the program as its vice president of indirect sales. Stewart most recently was director of agent sales for Excel Telecommunications Inc. He is most recognized as senior director of alternate channels for Allegiance Telecom before it was purchased by XO Communications in 2004. He held that post for four years before jumping over to Birch Telecom, where held the same title.

Stewart said the company’s direct sales force is focused on large enterprises and is looking to its new channel to target small and medium businesses. He said companies with as few as 10 vehicles may benefit from the solution, which includes a tracking device for each vehicle and modular software options that help optimize resources, such as routes, fuel, personnel time, etc.

Stewart said he is targeting telecom agents as potential indirect sales partners. “Agents are struggling to maintain previous revenue levels; they need other avenues,” he said. And while Mobi’s solution involves technology, he said its real matchup is with agents’ cost-management message.

He has taken care to make the sales process as simple as possible. It begins with qualifying questions, such as the company’s core business, the number and age of vehicles in the fleet and the usage (e.g. do employees take the vehicles overnight) are among them. Mobi’s sales engineers can use this information to determine if the solution can help. If so, they create a tailored demo presentation. The agent takes part in the demo along with the sales engineers; a byproduct of this is additional training to make the initial pitch more authoritative. An ROI calculation shows prospects how much money they could save from reduced fuel consumption and increased deliveries or service calls.

Mobi assists its agents with pricing proposals. The company charges a monthly fee based on the number of vehicles and the term (one to three years) of the contract. An upfront fee of $30 per unit is charged to activate the tracking device. Agents are paid a percentage of the monthly fee, ranging from 4 percent to 20 percent depending on their monthly billings. Commissions increase at the following milestones: $30,000, $75,000 and $150,000 per month in billings.

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