South Africa’s Vox Telepreneur scheme pays R2million

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

Telepreneur initiative rings up R2m in payouts as Vox grows network

Vox Telecom had paid R2 million in commissions to 3 000 entrepreneurs who had taken advantage of its Vox Telepreneur initiative, aimed at increasing sales for small businesses, the listed telecoms group said this week.

Through Vox Telepreneur, entrepreneurs endorse Vox's products and services, such as voice over internet protocol (VoIP), through their own social networks, and in return save on their telephony costs.

They also earn a commission on the sale of every Vox ADSL phone, as well as on the calls the customer makes.

Each new customer increases the dealer's ongoing annuity revenue.

The Vox ADSL phone is a VoIP-enabled handset that can cut a user's telephone bill by as much as half, according to Vox.

"We decided to use a network marketing model for Vox Telepreneur because we wanted to help develop new entrepreneurs, so we're thrilled to see that it's working," said chief executive Douglas Reed.

He said the dealers made an initial investment of R780 and Vox did not charge for training.

Frank Marais, a Vox Telepreneur based in Bloemfontein, claims to have saved significantly on telephony and connectivity costs, and at the same time generated income from incoming calls.

"Apart from the financial savings, having experienced technical problems with my previous telephony/connectivity supplier, where support was not part of their manifesto, I was pleasantly surprised with the support from Vox," he said.

Marais, who owns publishing firm Passive Incomes, joined the Vox Telepreneur dealer in February and was quickly promoted to a super dealer, meaning that he assists dealers outside his own network to grow their Vox Telepreneur business through training, mentoring and advice.

Marais has 39 dealers or entrepreneurs and 33 customers. He expected two large customers to come on board next month, both of which needed more than 100 ADSL phones for their branches.

Reed noted that the top Vox Telepreneur dealers were earning about R10 000 a month.

He added that the initiative had given many people a first taste of running their own business, and most dealers were choosing to start out part time.

"We've started slowly, and we're very satisfied with the growth figures. We paid out just under R230 000 in February, and expect to see significant growth over the remainder of the year."