By Craig Zammit

MELBOURNE: Publicly listed technology supplier, Freshtel, announced today that it has been appointed the preferred provider of internet telephony products for the Narta electrical buying group.

The new arrangement will see Freshtel internet telephone products introduced into Clive Peeters New South Wales stores immediately, while David Jones has already confirmed its initial order. Freshtel remains in final negotiations with several other Narta members.

“Consumer demand has dictated that we supply our product to the retail market in Australia, although our core business remains white labeling our service to wholesale customers,” said Freshtel CEO, Michael Carew.

“Freshtel’s strategy revolves around partnering with the right companies globally, allowing Freshtel to gain mass market penetration. By aligning ourselves with the Narta Group, and the high quality retail members it represents, Freshtel can grow its domestic retail business without the need to invest in infrastructure to service a wide range of retailers.

“The strong demand that has been shown for our products and services is a fantastic indication of the quality, simplicity and east of use that consumers want from an internet telephone solution. We are confident that the Narta Group is the perfect partner to meet this demand.”

As in the UK market, it is Freshtel’s intention that the retail business will complement the launch of a service in conjunction with an Australian wholesale white label partner. All users will utilise the Voicedot network, ensuring compatibility across the services and generating critical mass for the network.

“Freshtel will continue to focus on global white label opportunities but will, where appropriate, enter into complementary agreements to generate additional revenue and increase the number of users on our network globally,” said Carew.

“Working with Freshtel allows us to extend the value offering to our consumers in the IT and communications space. We reviewed many solution providers and we found that the Freshtel positioning was more closely aligned with the Narta strategy,” said Narta national category manger – IT and communications, Leanne Tieu.

Current Narta members include Clive Peeters, David Jones, JB Hi-Fi, Clive Anthonys, Bing Lee, Radio Rentals and Downtown Duty Free.