The company blog
Keep up to date with current news and highlights from the SMS industry

Time lapse movie: “Office Expansion at Esendex HQ”

This spring we spread our wings and expanded into another 5,000sq ft of office space, in the same building at our HQ in Nottingham. This week we thought we’d give you a quick glimse into the office expansion.

Our creative senior software developer Jonathan, has taken the time to create a time lapse movie.

He made two time lapse cameras out of a kit of parts, including a Raspberry Pi, a PiFace Control and Display expansion module, a Raspberry Pi Camera and a case.  These cameras were mounted onto the office wall using Velcro, and took a still image once every minute, capturing all the action during the construction of the new office. The cameras recorded the pictures on memory cards which Jonathan later stitched together into time lapse videos, showing the building work happening from two angles during the whole transformation process.

The entire thing has been compressed into a short one minute trailer for your convenience. We love it, we hope you do too!

Here’s a picture of the finished office:

Esendex_DomHenry_198

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Introducing…a shiny new office!

We’ve been growing since inception, and have taken another 5,000sq ft of space in the same building at our HQ in Nottingham.

This week we had a launch party to celebrate.  This was a great opportunity to open some Champagne and celebrate with all those who have contributed to the success of Esendex, since its launch in 2001 – including staff, customers, suppliers and friends of Esendex.

Councillor Nick McDonald (Cabinet Member for Jobs & Growth at Nottingham City Council), was our guest of honour for the evening, and after a fantastic speech he unveiled our brand new office space via text message. This message used our Push Notification service, sending the message to a laptop which then passed the message over Bluetooth to a LEGO NXT – this started to move the ribbon and released loads of balloons. It’s pretty amazing what you can do with SMS!

Esendex_DomHenry_135

The launch party was also the night that “the den” was revealed to all for the first time! The den includes a break-out area with beanbags, a table arcade game and a leisure space with a pool table with baize in our corporate colour of purple.

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Thanks to everyone who joined us on the night and a huge thanks to our talented developer Dave, who set up all the techy stuff for unveiling the office via text message.

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SMS Cheat Sheet: How to make your text messages rock!

Businesses still like to communicate via SMS, and consumers still want to receive them. In fact, a recent Millward Brown Digital survey, found that consumers worldwide welcome engagement with companies via mobile messaging. Also, the majority prefer SMS over other marketing channels, including video advertising, banners and email.

But how do you make sure your text messages rock?

Your SMS success all depends on a killer text message. We wanted to provide you with an easy-to-read cheat sheet that you can use when planning your SMS activity. This infographic includes techniques and best practices to help you fully optimise your SMS strategy.

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SMS reminders tackle the cost of missed appointments

doctors

Missed appointments, known as did not attends or DNAs are a big problem in healthcare. Recent figures suggest that more than 12 million GP appointments are missed each year in the UK, costing a huge £162 million per year. There are a further 6.9 million outpatient hospital DNAs a year in the UK, costing an average of £108 per appointment in 2012/13.

Yesterday’s budget didn’t step up to tackle the problem – if people had to pay £20 for every time they forgot about an appointment, perhaps this would prevent so many healthcare professionals’ time from being wasted?

The NHS and many other healthcare services are looking at the problem themselves – using simple but powerful technology. Text messages are used to remind patients of the time and date of their appointment. This is also useful if patients need to cancel it; replacing what could have been a missed appointment with an opportunity.

Chelsea and Westminster hospital foundation trust has reduced its DNAs by 26% since introducing a simple text message reminder. The statistics speak for themselves.

SMS is frequently used in daily life, so why not in healthcare too!

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Connected by tech: Toothbrushes, shoes, glasses and more!

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It was only last month when we posted about how you can now send text messages to your appliances – your washing machine, fridge, oven and vacuum cleaners. Following from this, a recent study by Havas Media has looked into consumers attitudes when it comes to consumer items that are connected by technology.

More than half of all participants, aged 15-49 were fully aware of what a technology connected product is and over a third of them would be ready to use them.

Participants were asked to rate a variety of technology connected products. The most rated were cars (61%) followed by watches (49%), fridges (48%), glasses (38%), pens (36%), bracelets (35%) and clothing (32%). Some of those surveyed even suggested that the focus should be on shoes, toothbrushes and even forks!

At Esendex we’ve seen some interesting tech connections – but not just in products! Anemon Swiss System is a sensor that is located on the body of the cow. This sends an SMS message about the cow’s temperature – indicating when the cow is most fertile!

Technology connected products will undoubtedly continue to grow in the months and years to come. We can’t wait to see what the future holds!

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We’ve been awarded Gold Trusted Merchant accreditation by Feefo

Feefo

Feefo is an independent review system that promotes positive or negative reviews of merchants’ feedback. We’ve been using Feefo for a few years now, it’s been great – not only for us to receive the positive feedback but it also highlights the areas that need a little tweaking!

Well…last year was a great year and our customer service rating was at 100% over 2013! We’ve therefore been awarded Gold Trusted Merchant accreditation by Feefo.

At Esendex we’re continuously improving to become the best we can be. Well done to everyone at Esendex and to our customers for the fantastic reviews.

As ever, if you have any thoughts or ideas on how we can improve please drop us as email – support@esendex.com.

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For the second year running we are ISO 27001 certified!

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We’re pleased to announce that Esendex has achieved re-certification to ISO 27001 - an independent security standard which sets a framework for establishing, operating, reviewing and improving Information Security Management.

Yesterday we had ISO assessors in the office to review our ISO 27001 practices and processes, to ensure compliance against the ISO 27001 Standard – we’re proud to have achieved a firm pass with zero corrective actions.

Protecting our customer’s data is vital and achieving the high standards required for ISO 27001 reaffirms our commitment to our stakeholders.

Robyn Charlton, Project Manager comments:

“Here at Esendex we want our customers to know that their data is secure and managed appropriately. All teams across the business are continually striving to improve our Information Security through; audits and management reviews, regulatory change compliance, network monitoring and a whole host of other processes, proving that here at Esendex we practice what we preach!

 I hope this internationally recognised standard demonstrates to our customers that they made the right choice in choosing Esendex for their Business SMS!”

 

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Send text messages to your appliances – yet another interesting use of SMS!

Washing

At CES 2014, LG will be revealing details about a messaging service in its new range of smart appliances, that will allow users to control them via sending a text message.

The new HomeChat feature will enable users to text their appliances – the appliances are pre-programmed to respond accordingly. The SMS service will be built into LG’s fridges, washing machines, ovens and robotic vacuum cleaners.

For example, if you text “I’m going on holiday” to a fridge, the system will send you a text message back with something along the lines of  “Should I convert to holiday mode?” –  a positive reply will then switch your fridge into this mode.

The intelligent SMS system will also be able to tell you what’s in the fridge, suggest recipes via the smart oven, set the vacuum cleaner off around the house and remotely start a load of laundry.

The text commands will be available in English and Korean, with more commands and answers available in the future.

We’re always really excited about the creative ways SMS is deployed – it will be interesting to see how well consumers take to it!

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Behind the acquisition: what the purchase of Text Marketer means for Esendex and industry growth

Geoff Love CEO esendex

[CEO, Geoff Love]

We’re pleased to announce that the acquisition of Text Marketer signals the next step in the growth of Esendex and the business SMS industry, and we are excited about the opportunities and challenges to come. Geoff Love, who became CEO earlier this year, talks about the purchase.

Why has this purchase been made?
In July this year Esendex underwent a management buyout (MBO) from Darwin Private Equity for £11 million. This led to a restructure of the management team, resulting in my move from COO to CEO, and also brought with it the opportunity for future acquisitions and investments. The purchase of Text Marketer is the first acquisition as part of the plan to build organic growth and shows that Esendex and Darwin are making a clear commitment to moving the businesses, and the industry, forward.

Why Text Marketer?
Text Marketer has many great customers and has achieved significant growth recently. Plus, it is a brand that complements the Esendex offering. As one of our key competitors, but one that operates in a different niche, it was a clear choice for our first acquisition.

What does this mean for the two businesses?
Both brands will continue in their current forms – customers will not be merged, although there may be some streamlining of back office functions. There will be no disruption to clients on either side, and both parties benefit from the expertise and message volumes of the other.

The purchase of another profitable business gives us a lot of potential to grow two businesses, and learn from them both. We can now capitalise further on the growing industry and cater to an even wider range of customers.

What does this mean for customers?
Esendex now has an additional route for customers who want low-cost messaging, and some Text Marketer customers could benefit from Esendex’s clear capabilities in mission-critical messaging.

Purchasing Text Marketer demonstrates our faith in and commitment to the business SMS market, reassuring customers that we are working hard to bring them the best possible solutions for their needs.

What does this mean for the business SMS market?
The acquisition creates a combined business that can even better capitalise on the fast-growing market. Esendex and Text Marketer are already clear leaders in the arena and with our combined expertise, technology and commitment, we will continue to lead the way in new developments.

The increasing use of SMS in application-to-person (A2P) communications opens many doors for companies such as Esendex and Text Marketer to lead the way. Together, we have a whole host of tools and resources at our disposal to solidify our position at the cutting-edge.

Will Esendex now target other acquisitions and different markets?
This purchase shows our intent to lead the industry and to become Europe’s leading provider of business SMS and Esendex and Darwin will continue to look for opportunities to increase market share, especially within Europe, and make acquisitions where appropriate. The focus will remain where our strengths lie: in business messaging.

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Esendex acquires Text Marketer

We’re pleased to announce that we have acquired UK-based Business SMS provider,
Text Marketer, as part of our acquisition strategy. This creates a combined company with real potential to lead the business SMS industry.

The purchase is the first step in our drive to capitalise on the fast-growing SMS market and make the most of our acquisition capabilities following the management buyout earlier this year. The acquisition won’t affect the staff or customers of Esendex or Text Marketer: we are simply taking this profitable business and growing it alongside our own.

This is great news for us and for our customers, sending a clear message that we are leading the way in the business SMS market, and will continue to do so. Acquiring one of our competitors, made possible thanks to the financial investment and support of Darwin, is just the beginning.

Text Marketer, which was founded in 1999, supplies low-cost bulk SMS and has a host of household-name customers. This acquisition means that together we can serve a wider range of customers with a varying range of needs, from low-cost bulk messaging through to transactional and mission-critical messaging.

Both companies have experienced impressive year-on-year growth and we are now in an exceptional position. Together, Esendex and Text Marketer are unrivalled in expertise, technology and commitment to business communications. And we want to show that in all that we do.

This is just the start of our drive to become the leading business SMS provider in Europe.

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