Thu, 16th Nov 2017 07:00
16 November 2017
("Toople" or the "Company" or the "Group")
Trading Update for the period from June to October 2017
Toople Plc (LSE: TOOP), a provider of bespoke telecom services to UK SMEs, provides the following update on trading.
· Customer orders have increased every month since the Company's fundraise in June 2017.
· Digital marketing strategy has increased monthly customer lead generation numbers by over 100% compared to June.
· Customer sales order conversion averaging 43% against all leads generated, which are being converted into an order either online or over the phone with Toople agents.
· Cloud business phones over the same period have been the fastest growing product line driving longer customer contract tenure typically of 36 months.
· Sales resource now transitioning from outsourced to in-house.
· Despite the competitive market, monthly revenues have consistently exceeded £100k.
Customer orders have grown every month since the Company raised aggregate gross proceeds of £1.41 million, in June 2017. The Company announced in August 2017 that it had reached the 1000 customer landmark, an important milestone especially in terms of brand acceptance. Customer base now exceeds 1300 customers and revenue generating units (RGUs) now exceed 1700 services.
This growth in customer order numbers follows the implementation of the Company's sophisticated digital marketing campaign. The digital marketing strategy has increased the average number of customer leads generated per month by over 100% compared to the levels seen in June.
In the last three months Toople has averaged a sales conversion rate of 43% against all leads (digital and non-digital) that were generated by the Company. Some 50,000 potential small business customers per week now have visibility of the Toople brand and the compelling fixed price proposition, thanks to the Company's revised marketing campaign.
Toople's hosted cloud based business-phone offering has been the fastest growing product line for the Company during the period. This product line also serves as the Company's highest margin product and the longest tenure customer contract with a duration of up to 36 months.
To date Toople has been employing the services of a third-party sales agency. To further accelerate organic growth the Board has made a decision to terminate this relationship and transition to its own in-house dedicated sales office. The Board believe this will drive further customer growth and increase the RGUs per customer early in 2018. This transition is expected to take circa 60 days. The Company will be hiring a number of new salespeople which the Directors expect will lead to an improvement in gross margin on its SME focussed connectivity solutions in H2 2018. Importantly, the Company will be in control of the entire sales cycle and have full insight into which strategies generate the highest interest levels and conversion rates.
Currently the Company has over 1,300 small businesses directly contracted with in excess of over 1,700 RGUs across the customer base.* As this base reaches critical mass Toople sees a growing opportunity to cross-sell and upsell further services from its suite of small-business focussed services. Toople continues to outperform the market average in the independent Trustpilot scores, supporting the core values of cost transparency and great UK based customer service.
The cost of customer acquisition continues to remain within the range previously announced of £40 to £91 per customer.
*Wholesale numbers are excluded from this figure.
Andy Hollingworth, CEO, Toople Plc, said, "The Company's RGU numbers continue to grow every month and Toople is making solid progress towards becoming a significant player in the UK small business connectivity space. As the Company grows we have a better understanding of what our potential customers want and how to reach them. We have demonstrated excellence in delivering an outstanding customer experience. By taking full control of our sales cycle, we intend to bring our proposition to a wider audience and further grow our market share. We look forward to the future with optimism."
- ENDS -
For further information:
0800 0499 499
Andy Hollingworth, Chief Executive Officer
Claire Louise Noyce
020 3764 2341
020 3764 2345
Notes to Editors
Toople Plc offers broadband, VoIP and landline services and mobile phone packages to SMEs in the UK. Customers can visit the Toople.com web site to buy online, request a quote or instantly chat with an agent and choose the services relevant to their business.
The web site is powered by Toople.com proprietary Merlin software; a cloud based telecoms resourcing platform that acts as a portal for transparent, live pricing for services across the main four providers. Merlin also makes it easy for customers to add new services to their bespoke packages at any time.
Toople Plc has three core elements to its business. First Toople.com, its initial approach for small businesses where customers can buy connectivity, mobility and business telephony in an easy online journey. Customers can do this by simply requesting a quote or instantly engaging into a chat with an agent. Potential customers experience Toople.com through digital media channels like Google, Bing, cost comparison web sites and social media. Second, the wholesale business has a number of other telecoms companies that buy services wholesale, white label the propositions and resell on to their own customers. Third, the Merlin software platform gives access to wholesalers who want to interconnect with carriers for provisioning and billing services for their own customers, where a monthly licence fee is applicable to access Merlin.
Toople plc is addressing a market of over 5 million companies in the UK that are employing less than 50 people. These companies are looking for straightforward telecom solutions, explained in a way that they can understand, provided at attractive consistent prices and backed up by high quality service support. Toople aims to be easy to do business with, offering transparent, competitive pricing and excellent UK based customer service. The Company is rapidly increasing brand awareness and building its client base through strategic, on-line marketing campaigns.