Light Reading
COO Kevin Hankins talks to Light Reading about the carrier's loyalty and rewards program and the opportunity in bridging the chasm between networks and IT.

C Spire's COO Sees the Percs in SPIT

Sarah Reedy
4/8/2014
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More than three years ago, Light Reading published its Bridging the Chasm manifesto calling on service providers to strike down their silos and integrate their network and IT teams. It's easier said than done, and a lot of telcos are still grappling with how to do that in their own organizations.

C Spire is one such operator, and it's a particularly interesting one. The US regional wireless operator, which primarily serves Southeastern states, has been one of the most innovative, in my opinion. It implemented apps-based charging when everyone else was just talking about it. It designed its own rewards program, Percs, to encourage its customers to be loyal brand ambassadors. Plus, it's pushing ahead on LTE and, through a subsidiary, a 1Gbit/s fiber rollout to match Google (Nasdaq: GOOG)'s own. (See C Spire Crafts Apps-Inspired Data Plans, Tekelec Helps C Spire Get Personal With LTE, and C Spire Picks AlcaLu for LTE Deployment.)

What it hasn't yet done is go as far as to combine its network and IT operations, but it's a move COO Kevin Hankins sees as an opportunity for the carrier. We caught up with Hankins at the recent CCA Expo in San Antonio, where we talked about the move to IP and how it's bringing together networks and IT.

Check out the short feature in the Prime Reading section on the site to find out more about C Spire's Service Provider Information Technology (SPIT) ambitions, as well as its plans for LTE. (See C Spire Lets SPIT Percolate.)

It may also be a good time to revisit Light Reading's Bridging the Chasm Manifesto and its equally important SPIT Manifesto. Has your organization bridged the chasm and embraced SPIT (if not the acronym...), or is there still work to be done? (See Bridging the Chasm: A Manifesto and The SPIT Manifesto.)

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
4/8/2014 | 1:05:27 PM
Percs
The Percs program is really quite impressive. It has grown to include more than 463,000 members, including 118,000 non-customers, earning 180 million Percs reward points, 1 million of which went to charity, and redeeming over 580,000 rewards. Its app has been downloaded by 51,000 people that have earned nearly 8 million points from it. Those are some big numbers.

And, Hankins told us he's in talks with opreators about implementing their own versions, but the company's PR staff says other operators are actually piloting the program too.

 

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