In a brief overview, Mike Pugh, vice president of j2 Global (News
), an innovator of eFax digital fax solutions, discusses the history behind eFax, upcoming product releases and business fax industry trends.
Q: How did the idea of creating a digital fax service develop? What were some of the driving factors/ main motivators for coming up with this type of service?
A: In 1994, Jaye Muller, a 25 year old German-born musician and "techno- entrepreneur," was touring Europe with his band and found that his constant movement in and out of different towns and hotels caused him to miss messages. Jaye was inspired with an idea to develop a digital fax and voice messaging service that followed the subscriber no matter where she or he roamed. Together with his manager and business partner, Jack Rieley, they created JFAX (now j2 Global Communications, Inc.).
Q: How will eFax stay ahead of the competition in the future?
A: We’re constantly working to make eFax more useful to our customers. One of the many ways is to make the benefits of eFax available to more people. We’ve got the most fax numbers in the world, with choices in 45 countries and 3000 cities and we’re adding more all of the time. You can get a fax number in your own city, or you can choose a city where your biggest customer is located, or you can get a toll-free number to present a professional image.
Q: Are there any new eFax features currently in the works?
A: We’re always working to make the service easier to use and more powerful. I can’t talk about some of the new stuff just around the corner, but we’ve recently released a number of great features including new countries as well as support for StarOffice and Office 07.
Q: Approximately how much does a small and/or average business save by switching out their traditional fax machines for eFax?
A: Businesses will save hundreds of dollars by replacing their traditional fax machines with eFax. According to Davidson Consulting, using an electronic fax like eFax may result in a cost savings of $1.22 per fax.
Q: Besides eFax Messenger, are there other digital fax services you plan on adding to keep up with advanced mobile technology?
A: eFax works with any e-mail account, so you can already use it with any e-mail-ready mobile device. That’s one of the great things about eFax—it leverages the tools, like e-mail, that you already use every day.
Q: As an increasing amount of companies go “green”, how is eFax capitalizing on this? And do you expect to see an increasing demand for digital fax service?
A: eFax is an important part of a “green” office. Most people first think of how eFax saves on paper, which it certainly does. Since each fax goes straight into your e-mail, you print only what you want to, you don’t print every page like a fax machine would. But there are also big benefits on energy savings. Running a fax machine soaks up a lot of power, so turning it off and using eFax is a smart idea.
Q: In terms of industries or verticals, where has the eFax product seen the most growth? How do you continue to tap into new markets?
A: With enhanced compliance and security options offered through our Corporate product lines, we have seen growth in legal, finance, and healthcare segments. Our International growth has been phenomenal with eFax becoming the leading brand in some of the major European Union countries including the UK, Germany, France, Netherlands, and Spain.