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AT&Ti Deals are now in Atlanta, Dallas and Los Angeles, and will likely be launching deals offerings in 10 markets by the fourth quarter of 2011, according to AT&Ti VP of Business Development Todd Rose, who was speaking at DMS ’11 in Denver. By “early 2012, there will tentatively be a few dozen. The timetable might be accelerated based on how the deals distribution and ecosystem shapes up,” he added. For the time being, a team of dedicated sales reps are being used.

For AT&Ti, deals represent “an offensive opportunity,” added Rose. “The product gets into a customer segment we haven’t historically served very well.” At the same time, AT&Ti has an unexpected advantage: a customer-centric approach. Pure plays such as Groupon need to max out the opportunity with every deal, whether or not it meets the needs of merchants or users, he suggested.

While the deals are currently focused on customer acquisition, like most deals providers, Rose said the company’s DNA is to help local customers both acquire and retain customers. As time goes on, the focus will be more about retention,” he said.

Rose also noted that AT&Ti is currently discussing a range of partnerships with major brands on the Web, as well as with location-based services. “They may not have the appetite or resources to build up a local sales force,” he said. “It is a perfect time to engage with them.”

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