U.S. Service Providers Spin off Assets as the Core Business Shifts

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

• AT&T, Verizon, Windstream and MegaPath all share asset divestments in their recent history, shedding non-core assets through outright sales or moving them to OpEx.

• Over the long term, market forces can conceivably push asset buyers and asset sellers to evolve in different directions.

Earlier in February, Verizon reached agreements for two major sales: a roughly $10.5 billion divestment of incumbent local GTE telephone properties, and a $5 billion long-term lease/manage/purchase arrangement for its 11,300 wireless towers (see “Frontier Lands the Rest of Former GTE Telephone as Verizon Cuts Deals to Raise $15 Billion,” Feb. 9, 2015). The wireless tower long-term lease details resemble a similar arrangement AT&T reached with Crown Castle in October 2013. Continue reading “U.S. Service Providers Spin off Assets as the Core Business Shifts”

NII to Cede Peru Operations to Entel, Consolidating Around Brazil and Mexico Core Markets

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • NII selling its Peru holdings could help fund investments to become a major cellular competitor in Brazil and Mexico.
  • Mexico and Brazil are extremely competitive markets; still, the long-running wireless demand boom could help lift NII’s prospects.

On April 4, regional Latin America wireless specialist Nextel International (NII) announced that it was selling off its wholly owned Nextel Peru subsidiary to Chile’s incumbent provider Empresa Nacional de Telecomunicaciones (Entel). The purchase price is expected to be US$400 million when the transaction completes in H2 2013. NII will continue to compete with its existing wireless services in Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Chile. Continue reading “NII to Cede Peru Operations to Entel, Consolidating Around Brazil and Mexico Core Markets”

IT Pains Evolving: Where’s Holmes & Watson?

M. Spanbauer
M. Spanbauer

Summary Bullets:

  • Intelligent embedded network agents and sophisticated software heuristics provide key insights into information and performance patterns for predictable data consumption, but interpreting these requires talent
  • Humans remain the most valuable troubleshooting tool in the IT arsenal

Having worked in infrastructure in the ‘90s and I’ve done my fair share of troubleshooting vampire taps, thick-LAN, and eventually thin LAN (and those finicky terminations) I can say we’ve come a long way.  Granted at its most basic we’re troubleshooting low voltage electrical wires in most wired infrastructure.  Sophisticated tools are embedded in many switching platforms now which can immediately detect a link loss in addition to whether it’s a damaged cable or connector, or alert correlation from multiple devices to pinpoint the exact location of a ‘noisy’ device polluting the network.  Advances such as these have increased efficiency, reduced trouble ticket resolution times, and freed up valuable resources to work on more complex challenges.  With wireless access becoming the norm for clients as more and more devices go solely mobile, tools have generally kept pace and network management systems have slowly grown more capable and feature rich.  As cloud adoption rates increase and systems grow more diverse, the tools are likely to suffer a setback, though, with many disparate elements, both physical and virtual, contributing to a single application connection. Troubleshooting these will once again require a significant amount of technician involvement to determine root cause during an outage (and no, rebooting your client isn’t the answer, Mr. Helpdesk).  Physical and virtual agents must be deployed in order to collect statistics in real time and aggregate these bits into a collective perspective of the health of the network.  Whether this is done with one of the extensible “framework” NMS systems or via vendor element management systems does not matter, but at the heart of this is that enterprises need to embrace a more sophisticated management model than they have in the past. Continue reading “IT Pains Evolving: Where’s Holmes & Watson?”