SOURCE: African Business Review

African Business Review

December 20, 2011 21:28 ET

Clickatell CEO on Why SMS Remains King of Communication

NORWICH, UK--(Marketwire - Dec 20, 2011) - When South African Pieter de Villiers and his three associates put their heads together to create a business plan for their last minute holiday deal service, they soon realised there was one major flaw in their masterplan.

"At the time in 2000, people read email two or three times a week. We couldn't send you a 24-hour expiry deal if you weren't going to read it for days. In getting information to a consumer, SMS is much better, but there wasn't this capability," Clickatell joint-founder and CEO Pieter de Villiers says.

"So we threw up a business plan and started Clickatell. We weren't geniuses, we had a problem that no one could solve and we went about trying to solve it."

Clickatell's consequent success has been phenomenal. Eleven years down the line, it remains the largest online SMS mobile messaging gateway provider covering 871 networks in 221 countries and territories. With a potential reach of five billion mobile phone users, or more than 70 percent of the world's population, Clickatell is not only the industry leader, but as de Villiers puts it, "is defining the space".

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