Chief Executive Officer's Report
The 2017 financial year was a busy and noteworthy year for the Company. We undertook a major product overhaul, streamlining the entire portfolio into a singular App, which culminated in the launch of the Company's flagship product, Flexiroam X in June 2016. The launch of Flexiroam X represented a move from voice and messaging to "data centricity" in response to the rapidly changing marketplace. There was compelling data indicating that mobile users were moving to Over the Top (OTT) applications such as WhatsApp & WeChat for their voice and messaging requirements. Following careful assessment of our technology's capabilities and our available resources, management recommended the Company's focus turn squarely to becoming a global data provider to complement OTT players.
To position ourselves to be able to capitalise on this major trend shift, we embarked upon an aggressive marketing campaign by offering free data to travellers. This move captured the attention of major players in the travel and transportation industries, resulting in a number of significant partnerships forged at various levels of collaboration. The partnership agreements provided Flexiroam with substantial promotional opportunities, and included iconic industry leaders such as Tripadvisor, PATA, major regional airlines, Grab and GoJek. Almost overnight we had an additional audience of around 100 million people looking at Flexiroam X and the advantages it offers to travellers around the world. I believe strongly that Flexiroam X is a product that will elevate the Company from the periphery to the mainstream telco market.
The process of commercialising Flexiroam X has also given us additional insight to our customers' consumption behavior. For example, we know that the majority of our subscriber base who have become repeat customers are frequent flyers, small business owners and airline cabin crews. By gathering meaningful data around customer behavior for granular analysis, our sales and marketing team can now focus their efforts in tailoring product and promotional offerings more effectively to our customers, ensuring a better user experience and ultimately providing a higher rate of return for each marketing dollar spent. Our product development team are also using our in-house data intelligence extensively to build, modify and improve Flexiroam X so that it caters more specifically to the requirements of our customers.
Because FY2017 was in many respects a transitional year for us, and as is so often the case where an innovative new product is introduced, it has taken time to gain traction in the marketplace, and the reduction in sales from the previous financial period is a reflection of this. It should also be remembered that because Flexiroam X is used by travellers, there can often be a lag between the Company entering into a major partnership agreement and the corresponding financial impact of such an agreement, since people's travel plans occur over time, and they are more likely to subscribe when they are reasonably close to their travel dates. We remain confident that the numerous partnership agreements we have established through the year will bear fruit over time.
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About Flexiroam Ltd
FLEXIROAM Limited (ASX:FRX) is a leading telecommunications company offering universal voice and data services for mobile users globally. Its flagship data roaming product, FLEXIROAM X has coverage in over 100 countries with 4G speed in over 56 countries. FLEXIROAM is an asset light telecommunications company that does not own physical infrastructure yet is able to connect to around 580 network operators globally. FLEXIROAM aspires to be a household name in borderless mobile broadband service in Asia and beyond. Please visit http://www.flexiroam.com
Vice President, Global Business Development
Link: 2017 Annual Report