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30 January 2024

Skating to success in Gintelberg – supporting local growth with the cloud PBX from an agile MVNO

As they say in these parts, that being the now familiar (to readers of this blog) town of Gintelberg, “watch out Stavanger Oilers”!

That may be a somewhat obscure battle cry to those of you outside of and unfamiliar with the sporting landscape in Norway, but Gintelberg’s pride of joy – its ice hockey team – is aiming, one day, to depose the national champions.

In this part of Norway, it’s not Mats Zucarello (the country’s first Stanley Cup winner and erstwhile New York Ranger) whose poster adorns hundreds of bedroom walls; it’s the face of local star right wing K.L. Owtt (son of Gintelberg’s take away owner, Kari) that hogs the limelight.

And to think, less than a decade ago the Gintelberg Base Stations were little more than a small community club playing in a very local, very amateur league with a roster of no more than forty available players to draw on, held together by one enthusiastic volunteer coach, zero administrative staff, and a few mobile phones! Not even an arena of their own to play in. How times change, and in this case quickly. What an impact success has.

The Base Stations are increasing…everything!

The Base Stations, it quickly turned out after they were formed, were good. They won a lot of games in their first season and didn’t stop winning in their second and third seasons either, finding themselves promoted from local to regional to, now, the lower echelons of Norway’s highest tier national league.

They’re not quite in the Elite Hockey Ligaen yet (that’s the top of the tree), but they’re on the way and aiming for the summit. As successful sports teams often do, they’ve put their hometown of Gintelberg on the map. And as the good times have started to roll, crowds have increased, interest and exposure have gone up exponentially, funding and sponsorship offers have rolled in and a season pass in the Base Station’s newly built arena (the PBX Dome) has become the hottest ticket in town.


Immediate success, you might have guessed, has its challenges. How do you run what, overnight, has become one of the bigger, and most resource intensive businesses in town? How do you transition to a few employees to a team of professionals? You can’t afford any missteps because you’re the pride and joy of your community. Yet your starting point is problematic. Remember, one coach, a few players and a handful of personal mobile phones? Now, you have to scale up almost overnight.

 Success places a burden on communications

To do that, a few mobile phones aren’t the answer. They simply don’t provide the required communications infrastructure when:

  • You’re in the national league.
  • You have to sell match tickets and season tickets handling thousands of enquiries and orders coming in for both.
  • You must communicate with a growing roster of key sponsors and other commercial parties who want your attention now.
  • You have an arena to run and maintain, with suppliers to schedule and co-ordinate.
  • You’re a news story, so the media is making constant demands.
  • You suddenly have responsibilities for new commercial areas; caterers, facilities managers, a retail outlet, a membership plan, and much more each with its own unique communications demands.

As Espen Brokken, the team’s coach (and, interestingly, brother of leading Gintelberg lawyer Axel Brokken) observed when the club’s needle started pointing upwards, “how are we going to cope with success? How are we going to manage to communicate with what has suddenly become an audience of thousands?

Some good news at the start

Those few original mobiles really were it in terms of resources when the journey started. The Base Stations had no communications infrastructure, just a handful of mobile devices, linked to individual subscription plans. While the club, it’s coach and players were thus at least always able to be connected without any restrictions all of the time, such a basic infrastructure was never going to be enough for the situation the club suddenly found itself in.

What, then, to do when success began to arrive? How do you scale up a communications infrastructure to meet booming demand almost overnight?

For the Gintelberg Base Stations, the answer was quickly identified: switching to a Cloud Private Branch Exchange (PBX) which the club very quickly realised could deliver numerous benefits, enhance its communications, help manage its costs and ensure all the new demands it faced would be handled efficiently and literally without any upfront costs. Subscribe, log in, and go!

To arrive at the decision to shift to a Cloud PBX, the Base Stations growing organisation asked itself a number of questions, as follows:

  • Would we benefit from investing in a physical communications infrastructure at our new home base?

The answer was a resounding “no” when the club quickly realised that one of the primary advantages of a Cloud PBX system was the potential for significant cost savings. Traditional on-premises PBX systems require substantial upfront investments in hardware, installation, and ongoing maintenance, Cloud PBX alternatives eliminate these capital expenditures, as the infrastructure is hosted and maintained by the service provider. With a Cloud PBX, the Base Stations could benefit from a predictable, subscription-based pricing model, reducing their total cost of ownership. More, they didn’t want to be tied to fixed devices – agility is key.

  • We’re growing fast and shooting up the leagues. Can our chosen communications infrastructure keep pace with our expanding business?

The Cloud PBX provides scalability, allowing the club to easily adjust its communication infrastructure to meet changing needs as it is promoted upwards. That’s because a cloud-based PBX is hosted in the network of a mobile service provider and can quickly accommodate variations in the number of users and extensions required to meet proliferating business demands, letting the club scale up or down without the need for additional hardware investments or complex system modifications.

  • Although our organisation is becoming more centralised, our fast-growing workforce is still distributed with lots of remote and mobile employees? Can our communications infrastructure meet such needs?

Cloud PBX systems deliver unrivalled flexibility to support remote or mobile workforces. Employees can seamlessly connect via their mobile, so their location doesn’t matter. This facilitates remote access and improves overall productivity. Features like call forwarding, voicemail-to-email, and mobile apps enable employees to stay connected regardless of their physical location, in so doing fostering collaboration and responsiveness. This helps sell tickets, meet media demands, and make sure players know when and where to turn up to practice efficiently!

  • Will our comms system make our business lives easier?

Without doubt! The Base Stations chosen Cloud PBX system comes with a wide range of advanced features that can enhance communication. These include auto-attendants, call recording, voicemail transcription, call routing, business groups, and integration with other business applications. Together, these features empower the club to create a more professional and efficient communication environment.

There were, of course, even more reasons for the choice, for example a reliable and redundant solution, easy maintenance and upgrades, integration capabilities with other cloud-based applications the team used, and enhanced security measures among them.

All in all, the Gintelberg Base Station’s decision to switch to a Cloud PBX system gave the club a multitude of advantages. It concluded that adopting a Cloud PBX system not only addressed its current communication needs but also positioned it for future growth and innovation.

And exactly which solution did the club choose? They selected an offer from an enterprising MVNO that promised to help turn their consumer accounts into a group of business subscriptions. The cloud PBX solution – which includes easy management, rapid onboarding and a simple to use switchboard and user interfaces – came from Gintel, which also delivers solutions to other MVNOs, like Talkmore, and national and international operators, like Telenor and Swisscom.

Talk to Gintel

Why not find out for yourself. Gintel’s Cloud PBX can help mobile service provider of all kinds deliver compelling solution to any business or organisation, helping them to grow and communicate more effectively.

If you’d like to learn more about how the solution can work for you, please get in touch.

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