Light Reading
At the TM Forum Live! In Nice, cable operators see a real opportunity to generate more revenues from small and midsized business users.

MSOs Pumped About Business Services Growth

Ray Le Maistre
6/2/2014
50%
50%

NICE, France --TM Forum Live! -- Enterprise customers provide the greatest growth opportunity for cable operators in Europe and North America, a panel of service provider executives concluded here this morning during the opening Cable Summit session.

Assessing a number of potential business opportunities for cable operators, including eHealth, home monitoring and security, and smart energy, the panel -- Dean Walters, CIO of Liberty Global Inc. (Nasdaq: LBTY), Cash Hagen, CTO at WideOpenWest Holdings LLC (WOW) , and Carlos Moreno, CIO at Spanish operator ONO -- agreed that building on existing success in the "commercial services" market by offering a broader range of products to a broader corporate demographic offered immediate growth opportunities.

"This is the growth area," said Hagen, adding that cable operators had done a good job already of targeting the lower end of the small and midsized business (SMB) market and could now sign up increasing numbers of midsized business customers. "The incumbent LECs do a good job at the upper end of the market, the MSOs do a good job at the low end and there is a big opportunity in between -- that's where we are focused." Developing data center/cloud services is "where a lot of our capital will be spent in the next few years," he said.

ONO's Moreno said the demand from SMBs has been "happening faster than expected," with infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) the main drivers. The SMB market currently offers "the greatest opportunity for growth for us," he added.

Liberty Global's Walters agreed. "There's a real gap in the market -- it's under-served and the most exciting area of growth for us, with great opportunities in cloud-based services."

What cable operators such as Liberty Global, which has commercial services operations in 12 markets across Europe, must do, added Walters, is ensure that they can compete against the OTT business services players. "We need to make sure we're not just providing connectivity."

Other operators across Europe might also be experiencing the same market conditions, as, according to European Commission statistics, 99% of all businesses in Europe are SMBs, noted the session's host Ed Feingold, director of strategy at NetCracker Technology Corp.

That such opportunities exist has not been lost on the cable fraternity -- it has been a growing presence in the commercial services market for some time, as Heavy Reading research pointed out in late 2013. (See Heavy Reading: Cable Biz Sales to Hit $8.5B.)

The panel was less optimistic about being able to source new revenues from other areas. Growth in the smart energy and eHealth sectors might provide a little wholesale business and some partnership opportunities, while home monitoring and security is challenging from a business model and operations perspective. "We're still figuring out what can be monetized and how we would sell [such services]. Does it include hardware, applications? There are lots of questions to answer," said Hagen from WOW!

Whatever new services might be developed, do the cable operators have the OSS and BSS capabilities to be able to deliver and bill for them, asked Feingold? The "back office" is already challenging and will need to improve, said Hagen, while Walters said new capabilities would be needed. "But as we upgrade [OSS and BSS], we are finding that we are becoming more agile."

ONO's Moreno is a bit happier with what he has in place. "We are a relatively young company, only 15 years old, so we don't have [legacy] problems. We could provide new services with the systems we have. The big challenge is with marketing," said the Spaniard.

— Ray Le Maistre, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Documentaries
The Rise of Virtual CPE

1|27|15   |   01:38   |   (3) comments


As NFV strategies evolve from tests and trials to production telco networks, expect to hear a lot about virtual CPE (customer premises equipment) rollouts during 2015.
LRTV Documentaries
Optical Is Hot in 2015

1|23|15   |   01:56   |   (2) comments


Optical comms technology underpins the whole communications sector and there are some really hot trends set for 2015.
LRTV Custom TV
Policy Control in the Fast Lane

1|22|15   |   2:57   |   (0) comments


What's making policy control strategic in 2015 and beyond? Amdocs talks with Heavy Reading's Graham Finnie about the key factors driving change in the data services landscape. Find out what his policy management research reveals about the road ahead for policy control – and sign up for
LRTV Documentaries
Highlights From the 2020 Vision Executive Summit

1|21|15   |   4:33   |   (2) comments


In December 2014, Light Reading brought together telecom executives in Reykjavik, Iceland to discuss their vision for high-capacity networks through the end of the decade. The intimate, interactive meeting was set against the backdrop of Iceland's spectacular natural beauty. As one of the event's founding sponsors, Cisco's Doug Webster shared his company's ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Pay-TV Partner Harmonic, Helping Carriers Accelerate 4K Video Deployment with Huawei

1|20|15   |   5:42   |   (1) comment


At IBC, Peter Alexander, Senior Vice President & CMO at Harmonic, speaks about the growing interest in pay-TV service and its branching into multiple devices.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Sony Marketing Director Olivier Bovis Discusses the Outlook for 4K and Cooperation With Huawei at IBC 2014

1|20|15   |   6:50   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Olivier Bovis, Marketing Director of Sony, speaks about the coming of the 4K era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Pay-TV Partner Envivio, Helping Carriers Accelerate 4K Video Deployment

1|20|15   |   2:57   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Olivier Bovis, Marketing Director of Sony, speaks about the coming of the 4K era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Pay-TV's Networked Future

1|20|15   |   6:29   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Jeff Heynen, Principal Analyst at Infonetics, speaks about the future of the pay-TV industry and its transition.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Jeff Heynen: Distributed Access Will Help MSOs Compete in the Future

1|20|15   |   2:26   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Jeff Heynen, Principal Analyst at Infonetics, speaks about moving to distributed access and the future trend of cable business.
LRTV Interviews
Cisco Talks Transformation

1|20|15   |   13:02   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Steve Saunders sat down with Cisco VP of Products & Solutions Marketing Doug Webster at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. They spoke about Cisco's approach to network virtualization as well as how service providers can begin to monetize high-capacity networks through the end of the decade.
LRTV Interviews
Bob Wilson, Arsenal Legend: The Light Reading Interview

1|16|15   |   35:36   |   (3) comments


Arsenal goalkeeping legend Bob Wilson was Light Reading's guest interviewee at the 2020 Vision Executive Summit in December. See what the former soccer star and sports broadcaster had to say when he took to the stage in Iceland.
LRTV Custom TV
What MEF Third Network Initiative Means for SDN & NFV

1|14|15   |   6:13   |   (0) comments


Vitesse Semiconductor CTO Martin Nuss discusses the importance of the MEF Third Network initiative and why it's good news for SDN/NFV industry initiatives.
Upcoming Live Events
February 5, 2015, Washington, DC
February 19, 2015, The Fairmont San Jose, San Jose, CA
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
September 9-10, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
November 11-12, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2-3, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
Infographics
Hot Topics
Google Continues Gigabit Expansion
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 1/27/2015
BlackBerry Wants Net Neutrality Protection – That's Just Sad
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 1/22/2015
Verizon Ready for Google MVNO Challenge
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 1/22/2015
FiOS Picks Up Pace Again
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 1/22/2015
Indiana Carrier Takes Fiber to the Farm
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 1/22/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive