2019 Directory | Channel Vision 53 Easton Continues to Evolve By Gerald Baldino PROFILE L ast year Easton Telecom celebrated a quarter century in business, which is a huge accomplishment when considering how much the market has changed since the company’s inception in 1992. Indeed, the Ohio-based ser- vice provider keeps adapting as new demands arise and continues to serve as a critical telecommu- nications provider for businesses across the U.S. — as well as a cash cow for agents. A premier full-service business- to-business telecommunications supplier, Easton offers multiple voice, data and wireless solutions. It operates as a telecommunica- tions reseller, whose services are spread across multiple underly- ing networks. The convenience of Easton’s ability to provide one invoice for multi-location custom- ers regardless of the underlying carrier is a major selling point. “We are one of the oldest provid- ers of service for the distributor or agent channel,” said Easton founder and president Rob Mocas. “[To sur- vive], we have had to change drasti- cally during the last few decades. In the beginning, we were just involved in the resale of long distance. With the Communications Act of 1992, the long distance companies got into local, and local providers got into long distance. So, we became a non-facilities-based CLEC back then and started selling local and long distance services. “We are not facilities based, but we are the carrier, and we are the CLEC for our customers,” Mocas continued. “We have contracts with close to 30 underlying providers, including major companies such as AT&T, Verizon, CenturyLink and Spectrum, as well as smaller compa- nies such as Everstream. We cater to the agent/distributor marketplace.” Mocas elaborated on how a vast portfolio of supplier partners enable the company to stay competitive and respond to new market needs. “If our underlying supplier starts offer- ing 5G for mobility, for instance, we have MVNO contracts with AT&T and Sprint. So when those providers get into the 5G game, we’ll be offering it through them,” he said. According to Mocas, voice and data continue to be the company’s bread and butter. Time division mul- tiplexing (TDM) is still a big part of Easton’s core business. The com- pany leverages a PaaS softswitch for its Easton Digital Voice program, which is an IP-based replacement for traditional voice services such as POTS, PRI and Centrex. Part of what makes Easton unique for distributors, Mocas ex- plained, is the fact that the company typically does not pay a commission percentage. “We give the distributor a buy rate, and the distributor decides what to sell to the client at a retail rate,” Mocas added. “So if it’s someone like a trusted advisor who doesn’t look to make money off of network services, that person could offer services to the prospect with no markup and provide extremely attractive pricing. “Or, if the person is in the busi- ness to make money on network ser- vices,” Mocas continued, “they can choose what they think the market will bear and get paid on a monthly evergreen recurring basis based upon their markup.” This, in turn, gives the distributor more control over revenue options. “They’re closer to the sale than we are,” said Mocas. “So they know who else is competing. It gives them flexibility to tailor the retail offering.” Easton also offers a comprehen- sive distributor website, with a deep intranet containing pricing informa- tion, paperwork and training materi- als. In addition, Easton has its own internal quoting mechanisms, which distributors find very useful. Distributors also can lean on the wealth of experience offered by the company’s top leaders. “In addition to myself, our lead- ers have all been here more than 20 years,” Mocas said. “The breadth and depth of experience in the staff is in- credible. More than half of the people here have been here 15 years.” With expert guidance, a will- ingness to adapt and a diverse portfolio of service providers to rely on, Easton Telecom looks to remain a competitive and trusted telecommunications supplier into 2019 and beyond.