Carrier Global Domination Dreams Conquered by Pragmatism

R-Pritchard 071521

Summary Bullets:   

  • The refocused geographical target of Deutsche Telekom’s T-Systems ICT solutions business highlights a fundamental shift in ambitions from carriers’ earlier global domination goals in the enterprise market.
  • Market evolution, technology developments, and commercial reality (the need to lower costs) have made carriers refocus onto more sharply defined target geographies and customers.

In the heady days of the 1990s, when telecom markets in the Western world opened up to competition, carriers developed plans for global domination – sometimes on a go-it-alone basis, but more often than not via partnerships and joint ventures. Who today remembers Global One (Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom/Orange, Sprint), Unisource (KPN, Swisscom, Telia), and Concert (BT-MCI, then BT-AT&T)?  Billions of dollars were spent investing in worldwide expansion ambitions, but nobody emerged as triumphant in the battle to dominate the global enterprise market.  More recently, Telefonica has been reducing its footprint in Latin America, Vodafone has refocused on Europe and Africa, and BT has been selling off its in-country assets outside of the UK.  T-Systems will still support key strategic accounts under its revised strategy, reflecting a reduction in MNC account ambitions which is salient across the whole sector. Continue reading “Carrier Global Domination Dreams Conquered by Pragmatism”