mCarbon wins software deals worth Rs 35 crore from Vodafone India, RCom
mCarbon's revenue enhancement products includes talk time commerce (micro credit service), wherein customers can gift or lend talk time to other users. Micro credit service help telcos to provide services like an emergency credit top-up to their prepaid customers. Danish Khan | 26 May 2015, 3:57 PM IST Noida-based mCarbon, a mobile value-added services provider to telecom operators, has bagged new software deals worth Rs 35 crore from Vodafone India and Reliance Communications (RCom). The company has inked three-year deals with Vodafone India and RCom, worth about Rs 20 crore and Rs 15 crore respectively, for revenue enhancement products, consolidated call management solution for the regulator's unsolicited commercial calls mandate and Interactive End of Call Notification (iEOCN) solution, a person familiar with the matter said.
"The deployment is underway at Vodafone, which is going to be the biggest strategic partner of mCarbon after Airtel this year," the person said, requesting not to be named.
The solution being provided by mCarbon will improve stickiness in Vodafone's entire prepaid customer base while improving average revenue per user (ARPU) for the operator, according to the person. Vodafone and RCom did not respond to ET's emailed queries.
The revenue enhancement products to be supplied by mCarbon include talk time commerce (micro credit service), wherein customers can gift or lend talk time to other users. Micro credit service helps telecom operators provide services such as an emergency credit top-up to their prepaid customers.
"Indian telcos are still reeling under margin pressure and engagement issues with customers. Therefore they are looking at leveraging such software solutions to improve customer experience and ARPUs," the person said.
The Noida-based company has also held preliminary discussions with Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Jio, the only pan-India broadband wireless access licence holder, to develop video-based solutions such as video ring back tone. Jio is expected to roll-out 4G services this year.
Jio did not respond to ET's emailed query till late Tuesday evening.
mCarbon competes with companies including Amdocs and Ericsson in India's operations support systems (OSS) and business support system (BSS) market. OSS comprise software applications which support a telecom operator's back-office activities and maintain customer services while BSS are software applications that support activities involving customer interface such as billing, customer relationship management and call centre automation.
Bharti Airtel is currently the largest customer of mCarbon, with deployments across India, Bangladesh and Africa. mCarbon is operational in South Asia and Vietnam and some of its solutions are being implemented in select countries of Africa. mCarbon forayed into Africa through Bharti Airtel and has started working with Zain and MTN for certain verticals and countries.
Vilifying Zero Rating will hurt India's Internet growth
Net Neutrality is an exhaustive subject, if not complicated. While the government contemplates its next move, here's an analysis on why it would be counterproductive to ban Zero Rating in India. By Kul Bhushan25 - May - 2015
By now, you might have already been exhausted by hearing, reading and learning about Net Neutrality. Even as debates, discussions and controversies persist, Net Neutrality has become a more complex subject, and highly unlikely that a conclusion is reached anytime sooner. As you may recall, the Net Neutrality issue emerged after Bharti Airtel announced a Zero Rating platform – that led to brouhaha on the web and also in the mainstream media. Also, not to forget how the telecom companies and bodies were demonised for the move that supposedly breached the Net Neutrality. Yes, Net Neutrality is important and perhaps is an ideal set up where Internet is open to all. But, why should Zero Rating be banned? Can't Zero Rating and Net Neutrality co-exist? Let us just focus on just Zero Rating for now. Zero Rating is generally referred to the system in which operators don't charge you for data consumption on particular application or services on their network. For an example, you can browse Facebook without additional data charges on Reliance network. Over the years, you must have already heard of numerous such offers and schemes where a particular Internet company has tied up with a telecom operator for free access to the service. Usually, the move helped these services increase more users base as well as telecom operators having more users accessing data – which is perhaps the main source of revenue after saturation of voice segment. For end users, they get access to their favorite services without additional data costs. Facebook's Internet.org initiative has a similar format. Why Zero Rating is necessary Needless to point out that India has a diverse set of mobile subscribers with a significant number using voice only and slower 2G networks. You can blame slower 3G adoption, higher tariff and inconsistent quality for the situation. India is ranked 142nd in terms of Internet penetration presently with only 86 million broadband customers, with 80% of the population having no data connectivity and only 7% of the subscribers availing mobile broadband services (as of February 2015). In such case, the immediate priority in India, where 80% of the population has no data connectivity, is for rolling out broadband networks. Zero Rating, at least on papers, looks to be a great medium to achieve this. In context of net neutrality, Zero Rating may be against the concept, but then there are very few alternatives left to boost Internet adoption in India. Subsidizing data can help a large number of small-volume users get on board. In an interaction with Digit, Mr. Rajan S. Mathews, Director General, COAI says: “Zero rating platforms, which have been tried across the globe, only offer more choice to the customer to consume content and provide a platform to content providers. In fact, the FCC (USA) has kept zero rating out of the ambit of the NN guidelines. We believe Innovations such as Zero rating will help enable internet access to these citizens, who may otherwise not be able to afford to enjoy these services at regular rates. Zero rating is not price discrimination. It is only that instead of the user being charged for it, the content provider pays. Such arrangements increase social welfare by transferring the cost of internet access from consumers to content providers. If a content provider deems its revenues (primarily through advertising) substantial, and wishes to engage in distribution arrangements with last mile access providers to subsidize access to its services, then it should be allowed to do so. Zero rating should be part of the customer’s choice.” Rajesh Razdan, Founder and CEO, mCarbon says: “We reckon the fact that a huge block of the population in emerging markets like India are devoid of basic internet service. Status quo, Zero-rating can be a competitive tool for introducing both Internet access and relevant online content to low-income communities. By spurring increased demand for Internet connectivity, Zero rating can help carriers achieve the scale they need to invest in better networks, potentially allowing them to provide Internet access at a lower price. “ Facebook has shared some interesting data on adoption of its Internet.org in India: I.O is working: >800K Internet.org users in India in just the supported 7 circles I.O is helping people connect to the internet for the first time: ~20% of Internet.org users were previously not active on mobile data (bringing new people online). I.O seeks to provide people with a path to connectivity by providing a set of free basic services that will serve as an onramp to the internet: For new internet users acquired by Internet.org, only 7% of data usage was Internet.org (including Free FB). These new users are now consuming >100MB per month outside of Internet.org (i.e. People are paying for data from Reliance). Criticism: Unwarranted? If Zero Rating is so beneficial, then why so much of controversy, you must wonder. One of the key concerns regarding the Zero Rating program is the monopoly of telecom operators. It is believed that telecom operators will tie up with a large content or app providers and offer them paid prioritization/fast lanes to the detriment of other smaller content/app providers. Another concern is that Zero rating schemes will become a hurdle for “innovation’’ as startups will not be able to afford the subsidized rates as well as the investments for tying up with operators. “We believe, that such innovative schemes will lead to increased trial and uptake of the internet services, which, in turn, will encourage and increase the use of new applications/contents over the internet. Also, such platforms are open to all content providers without discrimination. The choice for tying up with a service provider should remain with the content provider – big or small. It should be borne in mind that “Zero Rating’’ has never been the vehicle that either helped, or retarded the opportunities and the success of startups. Such success lies principally in the quality of the application and its ability to provide a valuable and affordable service to customers,” explains Rajan S. Mathews. Also read: Airtel tries to clear air on Zero Rating “The statement made by Flipkart regarding their decision not to offer toll free data service to their customers is consistent with our stand that Airtel Zero is not a tariff proposition. It is merely an open platform for content providers to provide toll free data services. The platform remains open to all companies who want to offer these toll free data services to their customers on a completely non discriminatory basis,” Airtel had said when Flipkart had announced parting ways from the Zero Rating program. Co-existence of Net neutrality and Zero platform As said above, Net Neutrality is an ideal set up that gives equal access to Internet to everyone. But, in India, priority is to boost Internet penetration, and this is why we cannot impose blanket ban on the Zero platform. In fact, the governments across the worlds have often adopted subsidy strategy to promote any industry or sector. In case of telecommunications in India, if a particular telco ties up with say a Whatsapp or a Facebook to offer free access to its subscribers, it benefits its consumers. A lot of youth and new customers have evolved from those free accesses and services to now heavy data users. “A well-balanced situation can only be achieved through implementation of well rounded policies that can protect the interests of all,” says Rajesh Razdan. “Customer always has the choice to access the entire internet for no content is blocked or throttled. It is only that for certain content, the content provides pay for the access rather than the consumer. Like a toll free call where the terminator party pays. However, it doesn’t restrict the consumer from calling out other numbers,” concludes Rajan S. Mathews.
mCarbon Slated To Grow At 50 Per Cent Next 3 Years And Expand Global Footprint
mCarbon, a leading mobile technology solution innovator will continue its work in advance analytics to offer products which enhance usage and uplift revenues of the telecom operators globally. The company is slated to grow at 50% CAGR while targeting a projected revenue of 200 Cr over the next 3 years. In the current fiscal year the firm aims to increase its revenues, 20-25 % of which will come from select international geographies including South Asia, APAC parts of Middle East and Africa. mCarbon will also make significant investments in select international markets for developmental activities and make strategic investments in assets which will provide reasonable international footprint. mCarbon is the largest airtime advance and credit supplier and biggest pre-paid usage and engagement platform globally. Rajesh Razdan, Founder and CEO, mCarbon said “With growing smartphone penetration and data consumption telcos are looking at contextual marketing offerings that increase usage and customer lifetime value. We are hopeful to grow more than 50% annually in India and are ready to further expand our footprint in global quarters of APAC, South Asia, Middle East and Africa this year. This exponential growth will come with some of our star products being applied in the new geographies and latest innovation in contextual marketing solutions,which will besignificant market trend in 2015. We are excited to accelerate in full swing in FY 15-16.” mCarbon has been provider of robust telecom services that enhances usage and revenue and creates superior customer engagement. Within a span of 7 years, the firm is servicing more than500 million subscribers across various telcos and has made a mark through its products and services which have garnered accolades and awards such as: The Most Promising Private Technology Venture in Asia 2013 by Red Herring Recognised by NASSCOM Emerge Forum in the League of Top 10 companies
mCarbon Targets INR 200 Crore Revenue in three years, expand Global footprint
The company is slated to grow at 50% CAGR while targeting a projected revenue of INR 200 Crore over the next 3 years. In the current fiscal year the firm aims to increase its revenues, 20-25 % of which will come from select international geographies including South Asia, APAC parts of Middle East and Africa. mCarbon will also make significant investments in select international markets for developmental activities and make strategic investments in assets which will provide reasonable international footprint. mCarbon is the largest airtime advance and credit supplier and biggest pre-paid usage and engagement platform globally. Rajesh Razdan, Founder and CEO, mCarbon said “With growing smartphone penetration and data consumption telcos are looking at contextual marketing offerings that increase usage and customer lifetime value. We are hopeful to grow more than 50% annually in India and are ready to further expand our footprint in global quarters of APAC, South Asia, Middle East and Africa this year. This exponential growth will come with some of our star products being applied in the new geographies and latest innovation in contextual marketing solutions,which will besignificant market trend in 2015. We are excited to accelerate in full swing in FY 15-16.”
What led to the establishment of mCarbon? mCarbon was founded in early 2008 to create a compelling platform based offerings for telcos to maximize revenues in the areas of usage and retention, customer life cycle and value management. We felt there was a lot of lacuna in the overall value added services space specially the way these services were pushed down to consumers throat without any context of value and it led to lot of dismay and apathy. Also, contingent to this problems, telecom companies around the world were grappling with the issue of customers staying dormant on their network, therefore, we thought of bridging this gap between the customers and telcos with our domain expertise and innovative ways of filling some of these gaps.
What kind of services do you provide? mCarbon is the leading innovator in the space of usage and revenue uplift solutions for mobile operators. We provide solutions and products specifically that drive customer engagement across voice, sms, data thus engaging users to drive network usage and also getting to choose what they pay for by suggesting usage based plans e.g. It significantly enhances customer's lifetime value and resident time on the network helping build more stickiness and loyalty towards the telco brand. Most of these are mass market services used by millions at the same time and as a consequence of it there is a significant lift in the Average Revenue Per User. We use data analytics and consumer insights as a base and hence customize the offerings for the entire lifecycle of the customer.
mCarbon is largest supplier globally by volume of micro loan for talk time/data (users taking small credits for staying on the network for various services).The product analyses consumer insights by taking decision analytics of talk time lending ensuring large volume of users get engaged on the platform.
Secondly, mCarbon has developed an analytics based contextual platform called interactive notifier that analyses every pre-paid call and suggests the best product pack based on the usage of various services custom fit to every user in the network, all in real time without any delay.
What is your market share? We are the leaders in usage and revenue uplift solutions in the region, though in flagship products like micro loan, we have more than 40 per cent market share in India by sheer volume of the customers that we handle on the platform on a daily basis and also that makes us largest in the world by same measure. Also, interactive notifier, we would clearly be the market leaders with handling almost a billion transactions on a daily basis making it arguably the largest of such a system in the world.
Who all comprise of your clients? mCarbon works with the all the significant telecom operators like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, Idea, MTS, Reliance, Aircel, Docomo, Uninor in India. It also has large enterprise customers for their specific enterprise campaign needs.
Which companies have you collaborated with for your research? Apart from relying extensive on in house work for product innovation, mCarbon works closely with leading research partners like Gartner to get a global perspective on its products and services to get a validation on its products. We also uniquely conduct partner workshops, attend global events, where we discuss the next set of product innovations and align our product roadmap.
How do you drive customer engagement? Our strength has been knowing the usage behavior of the customer and custom fitting the product to fit a certain target user. The collective knowledge of our people in this space over years has led us to creating various product innovations e.g micro loan, interactive notifier, call management suite that touch the customer at various stage of their service evolution and build stickiness with the network/telco. Knowing what the user wants and providing the same product in real time significantly enhances the experience of the consumer and ensures long term and sustained engagement.
Could you shed some light on the customized solutions that you offer to the telcos? mCarbon tracks consumer usage parameters and devises innovative products for telcos that help in engaging the customers. Some of the innovative products mCarbon is offering - micro loans or small loans, which help you instantly, staying on the network even if you,run out of balance. These serviceshelp you if you don't have a retailer next to you from where you can recharge. You can simply take a loan from the system for Rs 10/15/20 and pay up next time when you recharge.
Interactive End of Call Notification informs the customer about offers/packs and new services based on individual customer usage allowing them to choose what they want. It helps in extracting more value from an operator's data and enabling faster, more intelligent customer interactions. The platform uses advanced Big Data Analytics and Machine Learning capabilities to allow telcosto create actionable customer insights from their data in real-time.
What is your future strategy? We will continue to work with telcos since we believe that this is a very large area and more importantly they need a trusted partner who works alongside and understands the network operations on one side and consumer behavior on the other. In addition to significantly present in India, where we are currently headquartered, we are live in Bangladesh with soon going live in Vietnam and Nepal. Also, by second quarter of the fiscal, we should be live in few countries of Africa where we are in advanced level talks currently. Overall, we would like to cement our position to the leading provider of such services globally in the next three years.
mCarbon rides high on ‘star’ products; to grow 50% in next 3 years
Voice and Data
Voice and Data
Mobile technology solution provider mCarbon is expecting to grow at 50% CAGR to touch a projected revenue of Rs 200 crore over the next three years.
In the current fiscal year, the firm aims to increase its revenues, 20-25 % of which will come from select international geographies including South Asia, APAC parts of Middle East and Africa.
Rajesh Razdan, Founder and CEO, mCarbon, said “We are hopeful to grow more than 50% annually in India and are ready to further expand our footprint in global quarters of APAC, South Asia, Middle East and Africa this year. This exponential growth will come with some of our star products being applied in the new geographies and latest innovation in contextual marketing solutions,which will be significant market trend in 2015. We are excited to accelerate in full swing in FY 15-16.”
The company will continue its work in advance analytics to offer products which enhance usage and uplift revenues of the telecom operators globally.
mCarbon will also make significant investments in select international markets for developmental activities and make strategic investments in assets which will provide reasonable international footprint.
mCarbon Bets Big On Data Analytics, Launches Interactive Platform For Telcos- TeleAnalysis
mCarbon, the Noida based mobile technology solutions firm, has started focusing on data analytics increasingly and recently launched an interactive contextual campaign management solution for the telcos. The platform called Interactive End of Call notification or I-EOCN primarily analyses customer data lying at the telecom operator’s database and offers out of the box solutions as well as creates new revenue opportunities. “Data is of no use if you do not use it,” says Rajesh Razdan, mCarbon’s 39 year old CEO while in conversation with Gyana Ranjan Swain, TeleAnalysis “Just imagine the kind of data the telcos are sitting on,” he tries to take me on a tour of the telcos data center. “They know almost everything about you – your geography, age, sex, liking, disliking, food habits, buying patterns – everything.” “One could do wonders with this data, if put in structured and usable use, and I-EOCN is one such step in that direction,” Razdan adds. The I-ECON platform, according to Razdan, employs data analytics tools extensively and based on the data offers contextual and right kind of innovative solutions at the right time. “These days, ARPU is on southward move, and it would continue to go south if telcos continue to offer services the old way,” laments Razdan. The key is to quickly deliver innovatively priced services on a highly targeted basis; predict who is at risk of churning, who could be offered a more attractive plan and which plans are the most profitable – right now, not months after the event, he adds. mCarbon has already got couple of telco clients for this platform. And the company is in talks with other operators as well. Founded in 2008, the company has seen the mobile value added services (VAS) industry from close quarters – at a time when VAS industry was in peak and now, when the industry is almost dead. Primarily focusing on VAS like ring back tones, downloadable objects, CRBTs etc, mCarbon has gone through couple of tough years during the process when the industry lost interest in these kind of applications or services. But the company was quick to chart out a new path. “We started looking at the industry from a future perspective, and add little more intelligence to it,” he says. “We wanted to shift from a traditional VAS company to an intelligent mobile technology solutions provider.” Few months back mCarbon launched an application on Reliance Communications network that could lend or ‘loan’ some talktime or data from one customer to other. With this two new products Razdan is upbeat about mCarbon’s financial prospects in FY15-16. He eyes to double the revenue in the current fiscal.
This is clearly a VAS 2.0 for India. While the first avatar was all content aggregation using traditional methods like Voice, SMS being pushed to the consumer, now it is about contextual products, better target audience, since one the customer has become more aware (with data as a key driver, many such services are freely available over mobile internet) and there is a tremendous choice being offered by the OTT players of all type. A good example is SMS being a primitive VAS product while messenger apps like WhatsApp being a clear VAS 2.0 product. The offerings that take usage analytics of the customer as the key driver; ease of use and availability across device types will be seeing more adoption in the current value added services market. Also, at a macro level, industry has witnessed a series of developments on the back of various factors, such as rising mobile Internet and broadband penetration, double-digit growth in terms of number of mobile phone users and further innovation in product development via apps and social media. mCarbon is the leading provider of usage and revenue upliftment products for telcos that increase user engagement through various offerings by using deep customer analytics as a base. mCarbon's flagship product(s); micro loan for talk time/data and dynamic end of call notification for pre paid customers enable telcos to engage their base better by using such services during the entire life cycle of a subscriber. The products enable telecom companies to simplify and personalize customer experience by using consumption analytics and usage patterns. mCarbon is headquartered in Noida, servicing total base of over 500 million subs across all major telco's in India.
Rajesh Razdan in conversation with IIFL (Indiainfoline)
Replying to Anil Mascarenhas and Yash Ved of IIFL, “Our large focus area is on using analytics to deliver more targeted usage and revenue enhancement offerings. We are looking for a CAGR of 50% growth target over the next 3 years.”
How did the founders get together? Brij and I were colleagues at Comviva ( erstwhile Bharti Telesoft) and we got together later in 2008 as we felt we could come up with some innovation for telcos not just to keep their customers engaged meaningfully but also improve their revenue streams. We were fortunate to have Bharti Airtel as one of our first clients. Within a year or so we had most other names including Idea and Vodafone on board with us.
What kind of services do you provide besides the micro loan facilities? Apart from micro loan platform, Our Intelligent notifier platform uses advanced Big Data Analytics and usage patterns to allow telcos to create actionable customer insights from their data in real-time. Operators can create customer interactions that are more Personal, Relevant and Timely; providing a better user experience and generating higher returns than traditional segmented campaigns.
Call Manager suite enables all incomplete calls in the network to get completed by using various use cases like schedule calls at a particular time, stop spam, missed call notifications or collect call that allows subscribers to request their families and friends to take care of the call charge when one doesn’t have enough balance.
Also CEM portfolio supports telcos in managing customer relationship, designing marketing mix models for each customer, measuring customer loyalty, determining the true value of a customer, product upselling and cross selling and driving engagement on the network.
What outlook do you see for India mobile value-added services market? This is clearly a VAS 2.0 for India. While the first avatar was all content aggregation using traditional methods like Voice, SMS being pushed to the consumer, now its about contextual products , better target audience, since one the customer has become more aware ( with data as a key driver, many such services are freely available over mobile internet ) and their is a tremendous choice being offered by the OTT players of all type. A good example is SMS being a primitive VAS product while messenger apps like whats app being a clear VAS 2.0 product. The offerings that take usage analytics of the customer as the key driver, ease of use and availability across device types will be seeing more adoption in the current value added services market.
Also, at a macro level, industry has witnessed a series of developments on the back of various factors, such as rising mobile Internet and broadband penetration, double-digit growth in terms of number of mobile phone users and further innovation in product development via apps and social media.
What is your focus area going forward? Our large focus area is on using analytics to deliver more targeted usage and revenue enhancement offerings. Products like micro loan and intelligent notifier will be one of the few key products that we shall be focussing on. All these essentially increase pay revenue and monetize channels, enhance customer life time value for the telco.
What is the growth target do you expect over the next 3 years? We are a big believer of telecom usage We are looking for a CAGR of 50% growth target over the next 3 years.
Brief us about your international plans? We are planning to expand our business in the South Asia and some pockets of Africa. We have slated suitable investments for the same and currently executing the plans.
Any plans for acquisitions? Growing inorganically is an important lever for growth and we are very open to look at suitable opportunities especially if they give market and customer access outside of a large market outside of the country.
What is your outlook on telecom sector? On a broad level, consolidation has to happen in the telecom sector with more value addition for consumers being doled out across with data being a prime driver in the next 2 or 3 years. Analytics will play a major role in doing segmented offerings that drive usage and enhance ARPU at a grass root level. Payment enablement and using telco connect for 3rd party fulfilment will also see a steady rise and the organisations that understand technology and changing digital lifestyles will benefit the most in this current run.
What is your revenue mix? Currently majority (about 90%) of our revenue comes from India across all leading telcos and few enterprises, while remaining 10% from the international market, largely South Asia.
What is your revenue? Being a private company we can’t disclose the financial numbers. As a broad range for the current financial year it will be in the range of US $(10-15) Mn .
Who are the investors in the company? Are you looking for an IPO? Canaan Partners has invested in us so far. At the moment we are looking at a healthy growth for the next 2 years and IPO is one of the many options we may consider for strategic growth as we grow the footprint both nationally and internationally.
mCarbon recognised as "Top 5 most promising telecom solution provider" by Silicon India
mCarbon Tech Innovation: Monetizing Telecom Realm with Differentiated Communication Solutions The rapid transformation in the telecom industry has not only leveraged brand-new pathways to ease the deadlocks that the people face, but also has paved the way for telecom businesses to acquire a subdued growth. Amidst the scenario where customers have myriad choices laid in front of them, traditional models of service delivery have lost their charm and the frameworks that enable differentiated customer experience have been developed as a need of the hour, today. It has become imperative for telecom operators to partner with those who bring forth the right mix of technology, methods of engagement and system integration capabilities thus enabling them to reach their business goals easily. Noida based telecom solutions provider,mCarbon is one such leading partner that develops markets and manages customer engagement solutions around usage and revenue, customer life cycle management to give operators various means to engage with its customers assisting them to keep pace with their customer demands, but also help them to stay ahead of the pack.
Started with few disruptive ideas in 2008, mCarbon now stands as a leading mobile technology solutions innovator providing robust telecom services that enhance usage, retention and create superior customer engagement. "We specialize in thinking ahead of the curve and provide exceptional client service by going beyond what is realistically expected of us from our clients. The agility with which our team comes out with various product offerings is exceptional and that is what makes us stay ahead in the pecking order of suppliers to the telecom industry," asserts Rajesh Razdan, co-founder &CEO , mCarbon Tech Innovation Pvt. Ltd.
As a B2B Communication Solution Provider, mCarbon serves in providing a diversified range of services that endeavours to bridge the gap between the teleco customers and the service providers. Concerning this, the company has tailored and customized many products and the flagship products of mCarbon are in the areas of usage and revenue such as micro loan or advance for talk time and data , dynamic end of call notification using consumption analytics and usage patterns.
mCarbon believes in continuous innovation and the cutting-edge inventions crafted out in the company is italicized by the entrepreneurial and meritocratic work culture. The open door platform vested in the organization gears up the crew to express their opinions freely, thus helping the company to step beyond its success barriers. "We lay our trust in employees' capabilities empowering them to take decisions and break boundaries thus facilitating plethora of career progression pathways and avenues for success," adds Rajesh.
With leading telecom operators as its clientele, the company has been successfully serving countries like India, South Asia, Bangladesh and Nepal. With this, the company also endeavours to spread their wings across all pre-paid economies of the world by building right strategic alliances thus helping them to reach goal faster and more efficiently.
mCarbon and Tata DOCOMO introduces CRBT Services
A leading mobile Value Added Service (VAS) provider, mCarbon has entered into a strategic technology partnership with leading telecom service provider Tata DOCOMO. The partnership will provide technological support for Tata DOCOMO’s caller ring back tone (CRBT) service. mCarbon’s CRBT service is not just an application; it is an end-to-end solution. By providing service management with every deployment of CRBT, mCarbon will enable Tata DOCOMO to achieve a rapid return on investment as well as benefit from its extensive experience of running CRBT services across rapidly growing markets globally. mCarbon is live with CRBT in 4 circles Kolkata, UP East, Biharand Rest of West Bengal. Rajesh Razdan, Co-founder and Director, mCarbon, remarked, “Since its inception mCarbon has been working with leading service providers to take cutting-edge value added services to customers across the globe. Our association with Tata DOCOMO will enable us to use our extensive experience in the CRBT space for the benefit of their customers.” DOCOMO subscriber can access or obtain mCarbon enabled CRBT service through multiple mediums like IVR, SMS, USSD or Web or Client (Channel99). Operator can use the service as a tool to promote latest and hit songs and attract users to change its earlier ring back tone (RBT) to new one. Corporates can also tie-up with operator to play their corporate tune on their employee’s numbers (Time based). The service will enable DOCOMO users to play RBT based on predefined dates, that is he/she can select one song to play on Valentine’s day and another for Republic day. Brij Mohan Mahendru, Co-founder & Director – Technology, mCarbon Tech Innovation Pvt. Ltd, said, “We see our CRBT & RRBT solution supporting Tata DOCOMO with its unique features like service through multiple mediums i.e. IVR, SMS, USSD or Web or Client (Channel99) and facilitate DOCOMO to offer unique and innovative services to its subscribers. Our CRBT platform will ensure efficient delivery of music & audio content and rich, compelling information and entertainment to their subscribers”. Rishi Mohan Malhotra, Head VAS, Tata DOCOMO said “In this day and age, operators are looking at innovative ways to deliver services and every innovation comes with a price tag. Having said that, if the innovation is smartly tagged to an intuitive technology then it becomes a win-win situation for both the VAS partner and the operator. Our partnership with mCarbon has assured good returns on investment and hence we’re very confident of a successful launch in these 4 circles.” mCarbon already has an existing relation with DOCOMO for products like Channel99, Campaign Manager, Name Tunes, Start Stop – Try IVR. Through this partnership companies’ now enter into a long-term and strategic relationship in the technology space.
"mCarbon seeks strategic buys to enter new markets, boost revenue"- Economic Times
NEW DELHI: mCarbon, a mobile value added services provider, is aiming for more than 50% revenue growth over the next three years by increasing partnerships with telcos in Africa and India and possible acquisitions, and by expanding into markets like Indonesia, Vietnam and Latin America.
Launched in 2008, mCarbon's revenue for the fiscal year 2013-14 stood around $7-8 million with almost 100% growth, the company's Founder & Director Rajesh Razdan said in an interview.
According to Razdan, mCarbon has a 30% market share of the Indian VAS industry, which the company aims to increase to 50% this fiscal year ending March 31, 2014, a period when it plans to invest 10-15% of total revenue in research and development. Eighty percent of the company's revenue comes from India, while remainder comes from Bangladesh and Africa.
mCarbon presently works with all the telecom service providers in the country, excluding BSNL. "We are looking at working with BSNL and are in talks with them to provide our VAS products," Razdan said.
It offers a wide range of products and services to telecom operators that enable them to enhance their revenue and engage their customer with innovative services.
The company's revenue enhancement products includes talk time commerce (micro credit service), wherein customers can gift or lend talk time to other users. Micro credit service help telcos to provide services like an emergency credit top-up to their prepaid customers.
mCarbon's data loan or data barter service works in a similar way.
It is providing its micro credit service to Bharti Airtel and is also in talks with other telcos for the same. "So far, 3-4 million transactions have been done and over 100 million people are already using this service. Our complete product portfolio is helping telcos to increase their blended ARPUs by 10-20 percent," claimed Razdan.
MCarbon also offers customer value management (CVM), which allows telcos to evaluate individual subscribers in terms of their overall profitability, and plan tailored services accordingly.
Speaking on the Indian telecom market, Razdan said that the transformation is happening already and telcos have adopted customer centric approach and are focusing on engagement and retention instead of subscriber acquisition. "Earlier, telcos were concerned about numbers only, which almost killed the traditional VAS market," he explained.
In a bid to increase revenues, the company is now preparing to expand its footprint across African and Asian markets through strategic partnerships and possible acquisitions.
Razdan said the company has positive cash flows and internal accruals for future acquisitions.
mCarbon forayed in to Africa through Bharti Airtel and has started working with Zain and MTN for certain verticals and countries. "We are working with MTN and Zain for certain verticals. We have established an office in Nigeria. In six months' time, we will also enter Kenya and South Africa," Razdan said.
The executive said that the company is also looking at tapping some high growth telecom markets in Asia such as Indonesia and Vietnam. According to him, Latin America is also a lucrative telecom market, and mCarbon may look at tapping it in future.
The company will also expand its manpower by 15-20% by the current fiscal end, from 175 currently.
Mobile Value Added Services (VAS) company mCarbon plans to achieve over 70 percent growth this year by aggressively expanding its telco service offerings in the space of micro credit, greenroom and other such areas. “We would have grown more than 60-70 percent in last few years. This year, we look to beat that as well. The last twelve months, industry would have seen the downward growth but we would be seeing a complete reverse. We are working with top telcos in very interesting and innovative areas,” says Rajesh Razdan, Founder & Director at mCarbon Tech Innovation. Launched in 2008, mCarbon today serves country’s top telecom operators including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, MTS, Aircel, Idea, TTSL and Uninor and provides solutions in the areas of talk time, data commerce platform, network marketing and customer value management (CVM). The company’s current revenue is understood to be in the range of $7-$10 million dollars. Razdan, who has earlier worked with companies like Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN), Comviva and Roamware says that the competitive telecom landscape has increased the telco focus on customer engagement, self care and customer lifetime value which has helped the company to achieve substantial growth.
Micro Credit Solutions
The company is providing micro credit solutions to top telecom operator Bharti Airtel and is also in talks with other private and government telcos to provide such solutions. Micro credit solutions help telcos to provide services like an emergency credit top-up to their prepaid customers. The company’s revenue model for such services includes charging a minimum of Rs 2 from the subscribers on their next recharge. Such offerings are increasingly being launched by telecom operators, as part of their efforts to help and reward their loyal customers. Through its analytical tools, the company also provides data of the credit defaulters to the telcos to ensure that they are providing such credit services to the right people on their networks. “The idea is to make the prepaid customer behave like postpaid. What you do for that? You give them more credit or more trust of the services. You have to be really specific to the service you are offering and we help telcos in the best possible way to achieve that goal” Razdan says.
Expansion In Africa
Currently, the company has an overall strength of around 140-150 people and serves telcos in India, Bangladesh and Africa. “We are planning to further expand our base in the Africa market. We already have one office in Nigeria and are planning to start another office in Kenya soon,” Razdan informs. The company also says that it is looking for possible acquisitions in India and abroad to strengthen its solutions portfolio and customer base. It has also rolled out services for prepaid customers, like Call Manager, which allows users to filter calls at a particular time, and Call Me Back, which lets subscribers request their families and friends to call them back whenever their balance reduces to Rs 1 or less. –Jatinder Singh, Assistant Editor, Light Reading India
Noida-based mCarbon expects growth on the rising market for mobile value-added services
After more than a decade in the telecom industry, Rajesh Razdan realised that despite India's glowing mobile growth story, there were still large gaps in the mobile value-added services space. "India is a complex country with different types of devices, multiple operators and different languages. Each telco used its own platform to deploy its VAS offerings so a developer would have to innovate for several platforms, which is time consuming," says Razdan , 37, who has previously worked in Ericsson, Nokia and Comviva .
He was joined by his former Comviva colleague Brij Mohan Mahendru, 43, and together they launched Noida-based mCarbon Tech Innovation in 2008. "We wanted to do a tech-led innovation for telcos to engage their customers and increase their revenues," says Razdan. The duo created Greenroom, a platform that would work for all operators, enabling them to quickly deploy multiple netw ..
The platform also allows VAS developers to build products that can then be deployed for different operators. India is the second-largest mobile market in the world with 900 million telecom subscribers. The mobile VAS market that mCarbon is targeting is expected to reach Rs 33,280 crore in 2013, according to a study by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI)-IMRB. The company bagged its first client Bharti AirtelBSE 2.20 % by mid-2008, within months of the venture's launch. They rolled out Call Manager, which allows users to bar or filter calls at a certain time. By 2009, the company began working with all the top telecom operators in the country, including Idea, MTS, Tata Docomo and Uninor and Vodafone. Razdan took a conscious call to work with only the top operators and says this has stood them in good stead during the 2G scam when licences of some operators, who were not clients of the company, were cancelled. While the company began rolling out numerous products, like call manager, caller ring back and other content-related services, it was in 2011—when the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) made the 'Do Not Disturb' registry mandatory—that the company saw wide acceptance of its platform. "It was a major milestone for us as we got about 70 per cent of the market," says Razdan. The company began with a licence-fee revenue model, but has now shifted to an annuity model, where the company works as a partner of the telecom operator.
"Our partnership with mCarbon for the last five years has delivered innovative, unique and affordable services," says N Rajaram, chief marketing officer of Bharti Airtel. The young venture is now getting ready for the next phase of VAS growth in the country. "Now it is about customer retention and providing them more advanced services and we use the massive data we have to make services more relevant," says the entrepreneur, who did his engineering from University of Pune and MBA from XLRI, Jamshedpur. The company, with the help of its analytics, is working on a call completion solution, were calls that get disconnected in the middle of a conversation due to network issues can get reconnected when the network is back. Alok Mittal, managing director of Canaan Partners, which has invested $5 million (about Rs 27 crore) in mCarbon in two tranches, says that telecom operators cannot rely on just voice and SMS anymore to grow their revenues. "The old way of doing VAS, where telcos would push services, is also not working. Telcos need to create products that will match what the consumer is demanding and that is where mCarbon provides value."
The emerging company, which is targeting over $6 million (about Rs 32 crore) in revenue in fiscal 2013, is now looking beyond India to speed up growth. The venture has a presence in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Africa.
"We are planning to go to the Middle East and Asia-Pacific markets next. We are following our telecom clients—as they grow to new markets so do we," says Razdan.
Dubai – MENA Herald: mCarbon, India’ leading mobile technology service provider, is the largest supplier of airtime advance and credit in the world and has established itself as a clear leader in the space. The company has chosen Dubai as its Middle Eastern headquarters. With 8 million transactions a day, the product touches almost 400 million subscriptions every month. The launch of Airtime Advance and credit service and its deployment at leading telecom companies in India and the region has led to almost a 10% increase in average revenue per user.
“The mobile penetration in the UAE is one of the highest in the region and our addressable base in UAE would be approximately 10 million subscribers. After succeeding in other prepaid economies globally with highly innovative solutions, mCarbon is looking at UAE to be the hub of its Middle Eastern strategy. By having a base in Dubai, it’s easier for us to expand into other GCC countries and leverage the business potential of this region. Telecom operators in the UAE, Etisalat and Du, can immensely benefit from some of our innovative offerings. Apart from the UAE we plan to partner with other leading telco groups like Ooredoo, MTN and Zain,” said Rajesh Razdan, Founder and CEO, mCarbon.
The new presence comes in response to the ongoing demand from the telecom operators in the Middle East and African region to help support them in launching innovative offerings. The solution developed by mCarbon is highly scalable and provides enhanced customer analytics and usage information that enhances effectiveness of the service and drive revenues from increased usage.
“mCarbon’s key value proposition in usage and revenue category is the ‘Airtime Advance and Credit’ service. With this service, a subscriber can request a talk-time or data or a value added service advance from the operator each time they are in need, thus generating incremental minutes of usage in the network. Offered as various business models like an emergency need based or just as an overdraft kind of facility, a user may request an emergency top-up via a phone, SMS, or Mobile App, and the system will offer corresponding amount instantly. If accepted, the advance will be made available immediately with the validity period as defined by the telco. The system runs advanced analytics in the background to check in real-time things like eligibility, credit score which gets dynamic rating with pay backs,” added Sabri Amireh, Executive Vice President, mCarbon.
The company has already implemented its technology in India and Bangladesh and is looking for opportunities in other countries.
“The most effective ways of increasing revenues of telcos is by introducing products and services which put the consumer at the heart of the interaction and information exchange. mCarbon’s products under revenue uplift portfolio covers these needs and through strategic implementation ensure higher revenue generation,” added Razdan.
“The business need for the product ‘Instant credit service’ was to create new revenue opportunities from operator’s existing low ‘average revenue per user’ subscriber base with an innovative service that would both enhance the end-user experience and will not only help to recoup potentially lost revenues from insufficient balance in prepaid accounts but will also boost customer loyalty. Solution and product architects at mCarbon felt they had a very innovative solution for the mobile operator’s problems – create and secure a robust talk time/data replenishment system,” concluded Razdan