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Below is our recent interview with Tony Rivshin, Co-Owner at Top Connect:
Q: Could you provide our readers with a brief introduction to Top Connect?
A: Top Connect is a privately held company, established in Tallinn, Estonia in 1996. Top Connect focuses on providing quality telecom services and solutions to private and business sectors. Top Connect is a fully licensed telecom carrier in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in addition being an MVNO in Estonia and Lithuania, having its offices in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Currently we have 200 employees and are always looking for new and talented employees to join our team.
Q: Can you give us insights into your services?
A: Top Connect provides voice, sms and data services. The largest part of the business being an International Roaming sim solution called TravelSim (also being sold as a white and private label under various other brands), which sells in over 62 countries, having distribution through 120 companies around the world. Our Roaming SIM card provides connectivity to business and leisure clients, who want to keep their number no matter where they travel. Customers are using our data services as well all over the world at very affordable rates. The solution can be prepaid and post paid.
In Baltics we provide telephone services (Cloud PBX) and SMS solutions to enterprises. Our customers are private, corporate and governmental sectors including full communication solutions built for Hotels, Shopping centres, Office buildings, banks, call centers and etc.
Top Connect’s fastest growing business segment is in global IOT. We are seeing a huge amount of customers using our IOT SIM card and software solutions for multiple use cases; fleet tracking, smart watches, security solutions, agriculture and a multitude of other IOT use scenarios. This is by far the fastest and most exciting part of our global business!
Q: What is TravelSim? What makes it perfect?
A: It’s a prepaid SIM card which provides data, voice and sms services to anyone in the world. The SIM card has very large coverage, which is suitable for any type of person. Flexible data plans, ability to control your spendings (prepaid), possibility to locate your sim anywhere I the world (good for families and kids), keeping one number anywhere in the world makes it a perfect companion. There is no roaming as we work with many operators in the world, most of the time having more than 2 networks available in each country, automatically switching between them (at no cost to customer) if necessary (coverage/quality).
Q: How is telecommunications industry different today than it was just a few years ago?
A: Everything is shifting to M2M and high data usage by customers. Traditional voice services are decreasing, being substituted by OTT messaging, we have chosen to embrace this trend by offering incredible Data rates and quality and launched our own OTT; RingON. We see a very high increase in data consumption by our customers – more than 250% per year. This trend continues to be on the rise and so far volumes are just getting bigger and bigger. Thus, we are moving more and more towards every service be used over Data. Also, M2M sector is rapidly expanding – people need large volumes of SIM cards for many devices. We have also entered this market and not now provide service to clients all over the world – connected cars, trucks, cargo and logistic services, all of this is being run on our sims, which have no roaming.
Q: What does the future hold? Where is the company headed?
A: Top Connect is headed towards adopting new standards and services: eSim, M2M, Big Data services, we are building and improving our technical capabilities in order to be ahead of the curve and be in position to handle the huge data traffic and new innovative customer demands. Having our own Mobile core equipment and extremely experienced mobile team is allowing us to provide the most superior mobile roaming experience on the market. Another direction is being a provider of a sponsored roaming solution for other MNOs and MVNOs. Sponsored roaming is a solution that is ideal for MNOs and MVNOs who would like to leverage Top Connects mobile roaming expertise (exceptional rates and global coverage) instead of building a large internal roaming department that handles rate negotiations and quality for all the countries where their clients might visit! We see a large interest in our Sponsored roaming offer as we see that many operators outside of EU are in big need of good EU rates (voice, sms and data). The company is headed for yet another expansion in terms of providing more solutions under one roof: Top connect is transforming from being a telecom voice operator to being a roaming SIM card leader and now to become a sponsored roaming solution provider to large MVNOs and MNOs, focusing on data services.