South African Retail Motor Industry body, RMI, has joined forces with JSE listed TeleMasters Limited to lead up to what will be SA’s first industry-specific telecommunications company.
The RMI represents around 7,500 motor industry members, including car rental firms, vehicle dealerships, spares and repair companies and service stations.
The organisation has signed an agreement with telecommunications specialist TeleMasters to work towards the formation of a fully-fledged and licensed telecommunications company solely for RMI’s members.
Riaan Pietersen, head of Enterprise division at TeleMasters, says the joint venture will see the launch of a telco, TeleMoto, which will be 51% owned by RMI and 49% by TeleMasters.
The telco will offer discounted rates and free on-net VoIP calls to subscribers, as well as enhanced data and future proof Virtual PBX systems.
Pietersen says in line with the agreement, TeleMasters will now start signing up RMI’s member base as TeleMasters customers.
As a full-service license Telecommunications Company, TeleMasters is in a position to quickly roll out a new telco built on the necessary infrastructure, says Pietersen. He believes the new model will prove one that works for several large industry sectors. “TeleMasters has been working on the idea for some time now, and RMI was the first to take up the opportunity,” he says.
Pietersen says the benefits to RMI members will include a dramatic saving on their voice and data costs, as well as access to advanced communications technologies such as the Virtual PBX. This alone, he says, will deliver tremendous capital and monthly savings plus allow for simpler, more cost-effective maintenance and upgrades.
Many of RMI’s members are SMEs, Pietersen notes, and they are therefore price sensitive. “With their own Telco, which has their interests at heart and which can pass on benefits of scale, members can expect to see savings of 25% – 35% on their communications costs. They will be able to talk to other members on the network for free, and will also enjoy improved data services.”
Pietersen notes that while the immediate call savings may be a draw-card but in the long term, call costs will drop across the board and the real benefit to members will be the improved quality on voice and speed of data services.