Covad broadens direct sales channels

By Michael Martin, Network World |  Networking

Covad Communications plans to focus more on telephone and Web sales to small businesses, as part of its new small-business initiative announced Monday.

In the past, most Covad sales to small business have depended on a direct sales force and "feet on the street," says Avhi Ingle, a Covad vice president.

"We're trying to broaden our distribution channels," Ingle says. "Demand for DSL is high, and we need a better delivery system."

Covad will also continue to rely on reseller partners for DSL sales.

Other elements in Covad's new initiative include rebranding its BlueStar.net direct sales subsidiary to Covad Business Solutions and unifying the subsidiary's operational support systems with Covad's OSS.

"Where we've already done the integration, we've seen improvements in installation times," Ingle says.

BlueStar.net was created last year after Covad purchased BlueStar Communications, a Nashville-based provider of business-class DSL in the Southeast. BlueStar.net has installed approximately 10,000 DSL lines.

The BlueStar.net subsidiary bore the brunt of 400 job cuts Covad announced last December.

In addition to DSL access, Covad Business Solutions provides Web hosting, e-mail, support and private networking services.

Covad: www.covad.com

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