Telarus To Partners: ‘Where There Is Complexity, There Is Margin’

The telecom service broker is seeing its agent partners make the monumental shift in their businesses to include advanced IT solutions, such as SASE, cloud, and cybersecurity services in their portfolios. Telarus is coming to the aid of these partners with financial assistance, executives told CRN.


Patrick Oborn, Telarus co-founder and chief product officer

Solution providers have made a “massive” pivot in the last several years as they address the rapidly changing digital workplace trend with advanced, strategic IT solutions, a movement that is paying off in new revenue opportunities for partners, Telarus executives say.

Ninety percent of services sold by Telarus partners six years ago were network-related services. By comparison in 2021, 60 percent of services sold by partners were advanced solutions, including cloud, mobility, IoT and security services, the telecom service broker told the audience during its annual partner summit on Wednesday in Salt Lake City.

“Where there is complexity, there is margin,” Dan Foster, chief revenue officer for Telarus, said during his keynote.

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[Related: Cisco Opens Webex To More Partners, Agents With Telarus]

And partners are heeding the call.

Advanced Technology Consulting (ATC), a Cincinnati, Ohio-based solution provider specializing in voice, network, cloud and cybersecurity, has tapped into Telarus‘ resources and access to new suppliers to grow its business, said David Goodwin, ATC’s managing partner and co-founder.

ATC has been selling voice and networking since its start in 1999, but business has necessarily evolved and expanded to include cloud and cybersecurity solutions, the company‘s fastest-growing business, Goodwin said. Networking has evolved from MPLS and dedicated internet to SD-WAN and SASE, and voice now includes more complex offerings such as Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS).

“CCaaS is not something we‘ve done a lot of in years’ past, but we have a number of sizable opportunities in our pipeline right now and in the last couple of years we‘ve seen more of those and they’re starting to get really big,” he said. “They‘re also very complex deals so it gives us an opportunity to shine because not everyone has that knowledge.”

Ruben Pina, director and president of A1 BizCom, a San Antonio-based solution provider, likens adding new services to its portfolio to buying a car. The process once involved going to a dealership for the vehicle, but then buying other services, such as window tinting and a sound system, from different providers. Now, car dealerships sell the car, satellite radio and GPS built-in, optional tinting services, etc., Pina said.

“They are getting this revenue from a buyer that‘s there already and trusts them,” he said. “And because you already trust me, let me bring in these other services that I know you’re going to need. It‘s really the same concept. [The customer] is going to buy these other services from someone, so that’s where the margin is made up.”

Regardless of the underlying technology -- whether it‘s MPLS or SASE -- customers are coming to their trusted partners for help making IT decisions based on their changing needs, Adam Edwards, CEO and co-founder of Telarus, told CRN.

The ability to move fast and support customers is critical and it‘s where Telarus wants to invest. The telecom service broker today is helping partners grow their businesses with educational resources on new technologies, as well as financing assistance, Edwards said.

“Building up recurring revenue can take years. We thought if we could accelerate that by getting money into the [partners‘] hands so they can invest it, that would be good for them and good for us,” he said.

Telarus‘ lending program has been in place for a while for partners that are interested in expanding into new areas and taking a more hands-on approach with their clients, Edwards said.

“We‘re interested in the partners who want to keep growing their business, but that look over and say: ’Hey, I want to re-invest in my business and keep running.‘ That’s what we‘ve been doing a lot of for the last year and a half -- a lot of those transactions,” he said.