I am talking about a newly posted interview in Canadian Business Online, in which Joe Parent, vice-president of business development and marketing for Vonage Canada, heaps praise on Richard Branson's Virgin companies as an admirable business model that Vonage would like to be seen emulating,
"Who else — person or company — do you feel is doing innovative work and in what way?,: Canadian Business Online asks Joe Parent.
"We at Vonage see ourselves as a disruptive influence. So if you look to players such as ING in the banking industry or Virgin in any industry they've gotten into, these are people that took existing technologies and used them in such a way that they completely disrupted a business model," Parent says.
"So looking at ING taking something like banking, which has always been a bricks and mortar, and turning it into an online virtual business. And then Virgin as well, taking every industry and turning it on its head through personality and strong marketing messaging and commitments to customer satisfaction. Those are the disruptive models that we look at and try to model ourselves after."
The publication also asks Parent what he sees as business challenges for Vonage three to five years out.
Parent plausibly states that Vonage's most promising subscriber acquisition opportunities are not among the already somewhat-saturated early adopter segment, but in the masses.
We've been operating as a startup for the past two/three years where we've secured the early adopters and people who are technologically savvy and comfortable. What we're seeing now is a gradual shift to the mainstream. So we're seeing some of the indicators of the demographic like age, family situations, level of income and education — those are all changing gradually to become more aligned with a Canadian average profile.
So over a year or two you'll see VoIPs becoming more and more mainstream. In fact, if you look at reports from analysts, they're predicting that well over 10 million Canadians will have adopted this type of phone service over the next two to three years.
But Joe Parent, it should be readily apparent that many of these Canadians will be looking for bundled solutions,