Journal of Economics and Behavioral Studies
Vol. 2, No. 1, pp. 7-18, Jan 2011
Strategies for Sustainable Channel Relations in Mobile Telecom Sector
Welingkar Institute of Management Development and Research, Bangalore, India
The telecom sector in India largely comprises of wireless connections for phones. As of
today, there are approximately 21 network providers in the country with about 7 per each circle,
each offering competitive pricing to the consumers. The main objective of the study is to provide an
accurate role for the company executive in developing channel relations. Further to this, the study
explores the strategies which can sustain a good working relationship between the company and its
channel members in the mobile telecom sector. The
identified for developing sustainable
relationships were Setting distribution objectives, Channel design, Logistics, Image Building,
Inventory management, Channel management, Payment & credit, Promotional assistance, Setting
targets, Coverage frequency , Motivating channel members to perform. The sample selected
contained distributors from the Mobile telecom sector and company executives/channel managers of
leading telecom companies.
Factor analysis and Friedman’s test was applied
. The findings revealed a
correlation in attitude between distributors and the executives. Motivating distributors was rated as
the most important strategy by the company. The distributors felt that all channel partners needed to
have positive attitude towards the channel while company executives felt that aggression made
channel members perform effectively.
Such findings will be of use to mobile telecom companies who
are new entrants to the Indian market and to existing companies who plan to expand their coverage.
Distribution Channels, Channel Relations, Channel management, Mobile Telecom,
1. Introduction to Mobile Telecom Sector
Telecom services have been recognized the world over as an important element in the socio-
economic development of a country. The cellular phone is a natural extension of the basic telephone
service with an added advantage of wireless technology coupled with ease of handling, usage, and
mobility. Mobile communication has contributed greatly to an increasingly competitive and close knit
globe (Ravichandran, 1999).
Indian Cellular Industry
When India opened its market to mobile telecommunication, the country was divided into 23 circles.
Separate licenses were given out for each of the circles in 1994. The circles were classified as Metros,
A, B or C depending upon the revenue potential of the circle with Metros & A circles expected to have
the highest potential (Cellular Operators of India, 2010). Today, the metro cities of Chennai, Delhi,
Mumbai and Kolkata have surpassed 100% penetration. The Indian telecom industry therefore has
been shifting focus from high income metros to lower income, semi urban metros. Keeping this shift