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Biz Assist -11/03/09

Posted on Mar 11 in News-Publicby Press OfficerPrint

New Telco Calls for Dealers

By: Mohammad Patel    Date: 3/11/2020

O-Tel, South Africa’s newest nationwide telecoms provider, has started accepting applications from entrepreneurs interested in becoming part of its dealer network. 

Describing an O-Tel dealership as a unique business opportunity within the rapidly-expanding local telecoms space, Mohammad Patel, O-Tel’s CEO said “The dealer opportunities presented by the recent awarding to O-Tel of an ECNS license by ICASA remind me of the gold mines that were the very first franchised cellular retail stores in the 1990s.” 

Mr Patel explained that an O-Tel dealership offered three revenues streams, which include selling hardware, leasing lines and airtime sales to clients. 

Corporate and residential customers signing up for O-Tel’s telecoms offerings would first need to purchase hardware to enable them to use the services and then ongoing passive income was possible through selling voice and data after buying it in bulk from O-Tel. “Telecoms operators have historically always retained subscribers as their own whereas we’re offering dealers the opportunity to essentially become their own telecoms operator because we want our business partners to retain their own customers while we provide the necessary infrastructure and support.” 

It is preferable for potential new O-Tel dealers to have an existing base of telecoms customers although this requirement is not essential. “PABX installers are an important focus for us because they can integrate O-Tel products and services into their customers’ existing hardware adding additional revenue streams for themselves at little cost and with minimal effort.” 

O-Tel’s dealer model means that the company’s dealers bill subscribers after adding a profit percentage to O-Tel’s recommended retail price for hardware, voice and data usage. Dealers purchase voice and data in bulk via the O-Tel dealer website. 

The company promises business and residential subscribers tariffs as affordable as 45 cents (excl. VAT) per minute for local calls to Telkom numbers, true per second billing from the first second (international calls are billed per minute), a 24-hour turnaround time, both telephone and Internet connections and nationwide coverage. 

O-Tel is a licensed national telecoms operator after receiving its individual Electronic Communication Network Services (i-ECNS) license from the Independent Communications Authority of SA (ICASA) in late January 2009. 

The telco is able to offer a nationwide telecommunications service from day one because subscribers connect either to the Vodacom 3G network or Telkom’s ADSL network to be able to make telephone calls or surf the Internet. 

O-Tel supplies subscribers with proprietary wireless routers called O-Boxes designed by the globe’s most respected telecoms equipment manufacturers. Subscribers are then able to purchase their own choice of standard telephone handset to plug into the O-Tel hardware and then make highly affordable voice calls to any telephone in the world with the added advantage of optional Internet access. 

The recent awarding of i-ECNS licenses by ICASA following last year’s Altech court judgment has turned South Africa into one of the world’s most competitive telecoms markets overnight. “Unfortunately less than 20 of the almost 533 companies to which licences were awarded will be able to take advantage of their new-found favourable position to challenge the existing telecoms status quo because many of them have chosen to build their own networks. 

O-Tel dealer applications can be submitted online via

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