Hyderabad-based standalone internet service provider (ISP) Pioneer Online (formerly Pioneer Elabs), which has presence in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh is foraying into new cities such as Bengaluru and Chennai this year and is planning to target Delhi and Mumbai next year. Pioneer is tying up with several channel partners across key locations to expand its footprint.

The company which clocked Rs 80 crore turnover last year is aiming for 25 per cent growth to touch Rs 100 crore this year. The debt-free company plans to continue its focus on enterprise, residential and small and medium businesses. It wants to make inroads into the districts of Telangana and other States where it will foray in future.

Pioneer Online director Rajani Reddy told #KhabarLive, “To improve user experience and give consistency in what we offer, we are significantly investing in infrastructure. We have upgraded our network with fiber spread over 10,000 kms mostly in the Greater Hyderabad region. We are covering city-outskirts as well. We are growing both organic and inorganic. Pioneer has made some acquisitions already and look forward to acquire more companies across geographies to expand its footprint.”

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“We are seeing a lot of digital transformation at how an individual uses internet today for various purposes including paying his electricity bills or booking his travel tickets. Internet has become a lifeline. It is no more a service. It has become a commodity. As smart houses are emerging, internet quality and user experience are becoming important than ever. We are pairing with players such as Google to give better user experience for access to content.”

The company founded in 1998 is serving over 20,000 (broadband) customers directly and 6 lakh customers through its network. It’s a certified category “A” ISP player which owns fiber around 10,000 kms in Hyderabad, employing 1,000 people. Not just in cities, internet and data consumption is going up in districts as well. Khammam for instance is seeing a surge, she observes.

Segmental opportunities
Pioneer which provides Gigabit bandwidth offers enterprise land lines and broadband, residential broadband, wi-fi hotpots (customised), co-location services and professional managed services. The company has a net promoter score of over 50, which places it among the industry best.

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The company counts Indian Immunologicals, Grand Pharma, NIIT, Novotel, Hyatt, Radisson, Symbiosis, Maxcure, KIMS Hospitals, Brigade Group amongst its enterprise customers, besides others. There are 2,000 enterprise and channel partners who are using the services of Pioneer online now.

“We are seeing good demand in the gated communities too. We are serving 60 gated communities in Hyderabad and see similar trend in Bengaluru. We are going to work with telecom equipment company ITI in Bengaluru for a project where we will be providing bandwidth,” she said.

The company sees growth in the startup and small medium and enterprises (SMEs) segments. Pioneer today serves IIIT-Hyderabad campus including T-Hub. The company serves 600 small and medium businesses in and around Hyderabad.

“Companies across verticals are using our services. Pharmaceuticals, IT, hospitality sectors are some of the major sectors. We cater to 70 per cent of the hotels in Hyderabad today. We see huge demand in the visual effects segment. We are also serving large industry events by providing wi-fi hotspots. We are going to offer hotspots for an upcoming event that will host 50,000 visitors in Hyderabad. All these opportunities are coming our way through word of mouth. We are able to retain our customers despite competition. In the next 3-4 years, we will go for pan-India expansion,” she informed.

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Partnerships
The company has recently tied up with BSNL to provide landline connectivity for broadband and this segment is expected to grow for the company in near future.

On other partnerships, she said, “We are talking to multiple-system operators (MSOs) for Cable TV. We are working with over-the-top (OTT) content providers (such as YuppTV). These partnerships will be finalised in the next 1-2 months.”

The brand value of Pioneer has helped the group entities such as CtrlS Datacenters to expand their client base, she noted. #KhabarLive

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