With 22 years’ experience in the mobile phone business, Thomas set up TMTI, short for ‘Talk Me Through It’. He aimed to cut the currently high levels of returns to retailers and increase use of complicated modern mobile devices by customers unable to use them or follow their opaque instruction manuals. ‘It’s a disaster for the companies if people do not use their equipment,’ says Thomas.
He hit on the idea of putting a card in the box with the mobile phone giving the purchaser the option to receive a free ten-minute consultation with one of a central support team who takes the customer step-by-step through complicated processes. TMTI charges the retailer, but, insists Thomas, ‘for every pound we get, we give at least one back in savings.’
Thomas says Bath-based TMTI, which intends to offer its cards for DVDs, cameras and other consumer electronics as well, should make between £4 million and £5 million turnover this year and sees profits rising from £700,000 to £1.5 million. He is now working to raise ‘from nought to £10 million’ privately and has hired broker Investec to investigate the prospects of floating the company on AIM.