& cplSiteName &

Money Man Takes Charge at Openreach

Ray Le Maistre
1/13/2014
50%
50%

BT has appointed a former senior banking industry executive, Joe Garner, to take the helm at its access networks division, Openreach . (See BT Names New CEO of Openreach .)

When he joins in mid-February, Garner will replace Liv Garfield, who quit as CEO of Openreach in November 2013 to take up a new role in the water utilities sector. (See Euronews: Openreach CEO Jumps Ship and Liv Garfield Quits BT Openreach .)

Garner's most recent job was at global banking giant HSBC Bank plc, where he was head of the UK operation. He stepped down from that job in September 2012, reportedly because he was due to move overseas for his next role at the bank but didn't want to leave the UK, according to The Scotsman newspaper.

BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) believes his experience in retail banking, as well as previous roles at technology retailer Dixons and consumer products giant Procter & Gamble, will have prepared Garner for the Openreach role. "His experience of managing a large regulated business with a substantial workforce will help us as we expand our fibre optic network into rural areas," said BT CEO Gavin Patterson in the operator's official announcement. (See BT FTTx Boosts Cornish SMEs, Euronews: BT Promises 300Mbit/s Broadband, and BT's Openreach Reaches Ethernet Access Milestone .)

Openreach, which provides communications service providers (CSPs, including BT Retail) with fixed access network capabilities and services, is responsible for the operations and rollout of BT's copper and fiber access networks. Those activities have attracted a lot of attention in the past few years as the UK incumbent looks to build out a high-speed fixed access network using fiber and enhanced copper. (See BT Trials Huawei's G.fast for FTTx, BT Preps Its Next FTTx, Core Moves, and Euronews: BT Promises 300Mbit/s Broadband.)

As demand for high-speed connections grows -- for retail, enterprise, and wholesale applications -- so Openreach has found itself in demand but also under pressure. As a result, it has a mixed reputation amongst its user base. Since it was formed in late 2005, Openreach has been widely regarded as providing an adequate and largely fair service to its customers, but in the past year there have been grumbles from multiple CSPs about a decline in service levels, often attributed to Openreach being overstretched by the conditions of large backhaul contracts signed with UK mobile service providers. (See BT Opens Up Access.)

In the six months to the end of September 2013 (the first half of BT's financial year), Openreach generated revenues of nearly 2.52 billion (US$4.13 billion) and an operating profit of 523 million ($857 million).

Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
DOShea
50%
50%
DOShea,
User Rank: Blogger
1/14/2014 | 4:35:31 PM
Re: I wonder if anyone mentioned....
Though he has other experience, a banker is not the first type you think of who might be capable of nimbly interfacing with all of those parties and keeping them happy or at bay.
Ray@LR
50%
50%
Ray@LR,
User Rank: Blogger
1/14/2014 | 5:05:04 AM
I wonder if anyone mentioned....
I wonder if anyone has mentioned to Garner just how political this post is? And I mean political with an upper and lower case p.... as broadband becomes as important as transpotr connections, Garner is going to find himself the focus of  much attention from the top of the UK political scene all the way down to the village groups that want to know why fiber hasn't gone to their community.

And then there are the service provider customers and  Ofcom to deal with... 
Featured Video
From The Founder
Light Reading is spending much of this year digging into the details of how automation technology will impact the comms market, but let's take a moment to also look at how automation is set to overturn the current world order by the middle of the century.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
November 1, 2017, The Royal Garden Hotel
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue London
November 10, 2017, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
November 16, 2017, ExCel Centre, London
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
May 14-17, 2018, Austin Convention Center
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Muni Policies Stymie Edge Computing
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/17/2017
'Brutal' Automation & the Looming Workforce Cull
Iain Morris, News Editor, 10/18/2017
Pai's FCC Raises Alarms at Competitive Carriers
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/16/2017
Worried About Bandwidth for 4K? Here Comes 8K!
Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation, 10/17/2017
What Does Automation Mean to You?
Ray Le Maistre, International Group Editor, 10/17/2017
Animals with Phones
Selfie Game Strong Click Here
Latest Comment
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Partner Perspectives - content from our sponsors
The Mobile Broadband Road Ahead
By Kevin Taylor, for Huawei
All Partner Perspectives