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News Briefs

Posted: 07/2001

Partner Channel

News Briefs

* Michael P. Parizanski officially has launched the nonprofit Telecommunications Industry Representatives Association (TIRA,
www.agentstakecharge.com). Its mission is to promote, protect and improve agents’ functions. One of the first duties of TIRA will be to draft a code of ethics, recognized among suppliers, customers and agents. TIRA executive director Bill Weiner and Parizanski also plan to
provide agents with membership benefits such as health care, legal resources, education and training. Active Agent members pay annual dues of $695; General Agent members pay annual dues of $195. Supplier Sponsor members are suppliers that make a minimum annual contribution of $1500.

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The National Computer Association (NCA, www.ncavars.com), a group of value-added resellers (VARs), has joined Sprint Corp.’s (www.sprint.com) Connection Program with an agreement to market Sprint Global Markets Group’s productivity-enhancing products and services to business customers. The NCA, with more than 1,000 members, attracts vendors to the VAR community with a combined purchasing power that exceeds $6 billion annually. Under the agreement, NCA members can become authorized sales agents, consultants or affinity members, or they can take part in Sprint’s lead referral program. The NCA will offer discounts and savings on Sprint products and services to NCA members nationwide.

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Broadband service provider XO Communications Inc. (www.xo.com) has signed a national distribution agreement with Expanets Inc. (www.expanets.com) to sell voice, data and hosting services to Expanets’ 750,000 customers. It is the latest in a series of distribution moves; during the past 12 months, XO has added
400 indirect partners in markets throughout the United States. XO also has developed a dedicated extranet to provide service availability, pricing, contact, product and other information to agents.

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PlanetOne Communications Inc. (www.
planet1comm.com
) has announced Agents Getting Educated Now To Succeed (A.G.E.N.T.S.), a series of weekly training audio conferences and webcasts. PlanetOne has solicited vendor assistance from Cable & Wireless plc (www.cw.com), Broadwing Inc. (www.broadwing.com) and Qwest Communications International Inc. (www.qwest.com). It also has been selected by the Independent Agent Network (IAN) as having one of the “Top 25” agent programs in the industry, and one of the “Top 5 Most Innovative” agent programs” for 2001.

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Voice, data and Internet provider ezTel LLC (www.eztelcorp.net) has launched ezVANTAGE, an omnibus, online support system for agents, partners and customers. It includes agent information websites, customer service and electronic, web-based processing and reporting capabilities, research information and customer testimonials.


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