Analyst Makes Good

5:45 PM -- First, I want to pass on my congratulations to my friend and colleague Mark Lowenstein, who's just joined Verizon Wireless as VP of Strategy and Segmentation. This is one of those jobs that most people in the wireless would just kill for, and I was thrilled to see Mark get the opportunity. If you don't know Mark, he was most recently best known for leading Mobile Ecosystem , a company not unlike Farpoint Group that he founded and ran for the past few years.

I first met Mark many years ago when he was running Yankee Group Research Inc. 's wireless practice, which he also started. Mark is one of the big names in this business; he and I have done a couple of projects together over the years, and I've always enjoyed his vast knowledge, interesting perspectives, and professionalism. I'll miss this part of our relationship, but I'm looking forward to hearing what he has in mind for Verizon, one of (obviously) the most important firms in wireless.

So, if Mark and I were competitors, how come I like him so much?

In fact, I like all of my competitors, and I'm proud to have them as friends. The wireless analyst community is actually pretty small. We all have plenty to do, and often rely on each other to provide expertise in certain areas under certain circumstances. Many call this situation "coopetition," where otherwise competitors actually help each other out from time to time. All of us benefit from this approach, which I grant remains unusual in business. I suppose such a state of affairs is enabled by the fact that we work in a rapidly-growing field with fairly high barriers to entry. Very often this isn't the case. Regardless, one of the reasons I've been in this crazy business for so long is people like Mark, and I'll miss him.

— Craig Mathias is Principal Analyst at the Farpoint Group , an advisory firm specializing in wireless communications and mobile computing. Special to Unstrung

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