Industry giants help SMBs
KUALA LUMPUR: Telecommunications giant Maxis Communications Bhd has introduced two new solutions that target small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).
In partnership with Microsoft Malaysia, it kicked off a campaign to take technology to SMBs through its Maxis Push Mail and Maxis Mail services.
Tom Schnitker, Maxis chief marketing officer, said the new services are affordable solutions for SMBs that do not have the type of IT funds that their larger counterparts enjoy.
He said that only 5% of SMBs in the country have fully automated their IT and communications operations.
"The smaller enterprises cannot afford the IT service fees, so our solutions are made to encourage them to embrace IT," he said. Maxis Mail allows SMBs to personalise their e-mail addresses so that they can set themselves apart from other companies.
"Instead of having an e-mail address from a free web-based e-mail service, SMBs can now have their own domain in their addresses, for example, firstname.lastname@example.org" Schnitker said.
Maxis will operate the servers, thus relieving SMBs of maintenance costs. Instead, SMBs just need to pay a monthly access fee of RM38 for the service for every e-mail address they apply for.
"SMBs (usually) don't give every employee an e-mail address but we expect this to scale," said Jeff Chong, head of small- and medium-sized businesses at Maxis.
He said there are no limits to the number of e-mail addresses a company can have because the servers can always be scaled up to meet the demand.
Maxis Push Mail is a value-added option for Maxis Mail subscribers. This service allows users to access their e-mail from anywhere.
Yasmin Mahmood, Microsoft Malaysia managing director, said the partnership with Maxis will help SMBs settle comfortably into the latest technologies.
"I see this partnership as part of an effort to 'Malaysianise' Microsoft by engaging the local SMBs with the new working world," she said.
She said SMBs in developed countries have their employees communicating via e-mail from anywhere in the world on mobile devices, but this is a rare occurrence in this country.
Maxis and Microsoft, she said, are working to change this scenario.
The release of the new services is just the beginning of the Maxis and Microsoft partnership, according to Yasmin.
Both companies are also working together on a unified communications service, that will be launched by March next year.
The service delivers multiple forms of communication, including e-mail, instant messaging and Internet access, through a single device.
Maxis and Microsoft will also be expanding their suite of services to help more businesses take advantage of new technologies.