Eurobites: How BT helps prop up the UK economy | Light Reading

Eurobites: How BT helps prop up the UK economy | Light Reading

Also in today’s EMEA regional roundup: opportunity NOCs for Elisa; Orange’s cloud to power Egypt’s new smart city; Vodafone chooses Digitalk platform for MVNO growth.

  • BT employs one in every 12 people in the UK’s IT and communications sector and is responsible for generating 1 in every 75 produced in the UK economy, according to a report from consultancy firm Hatch. The report, “The Economic Impact of BT Group in the UK,” also reckons that around 300,000 full-time jobs in the UK are supported through BT’s direct employment, its spending on suppliers and a bit of a stretch this, one perhaps the spending of its employees. BT directly employs 82,800 people in the UK, but has been under pressure to cut this number to boost its “revenues per employee” figure a benchmark that is increasingly being referenced by industry commentators worldwide. (See BT still stands for bloated telecom, BT looks more bloated than ever and Telco staff face crisis as cuts claim 127K jobs at big CSPs since 2015.)
  • Polystar unit Elisa Automate has got the nod from Transtema Network Services to supply its Virtual NOC for use in Transtema’s network operations center. Operators have become increasingly interested in the possibility of “zero-touch” NOCs as they look to reduce headcount while increasing efficiency. (See Big telcos have cut headcount by 9% since 2015 and Vodafone UK is emptying its NOCs.)
  • Orange Business Services is to design and build a new data center to provide cloud services for Egypt’s snappily named “New Administrative Capital,” a planned smart city located 45km east of Cairo. In time, the new settlement is expected to be home to around 8 million people, and will house the main government departments and ministries.
  • Vodafone has chosen Digitalk’s mobile service platform to help it win more customers in the MVNO sector. Digitalk’s offering handles such things as payment and customer promotions. Vodafone-powered MVNOs in the UK currently include Virgin Mobile and Lebara Mobile.
  • Swisscom has agreed a 0.8% pay rise from April 1 with unions representing its 14,000 workers. Among the conditions negotiated by one of the unions, Syndicom, was that future salary increases would no longer be linked to individual performance evaluations. The current rate of inflation in Switzerland is 0.01%, according to Statista.
  • Ericsson has a couple more irons in the private-networks fire. The first is a pilot with carmaker Ford, at its engine plant in Valencia, Spain, and forms part of an EU-backed 5G initiative called 5G-INDUCE. The second is a collaboration with Russian operator MTS, and relates to a commercial LTE/5G-ready network for EVRAZ at its Sheregeshskaya mine in south-central Russia.
  • In a similar vein, Italian defense company Leonardo is teaming up with Telefnica UK (O2) to explore potential applications of private 5G technology in the defense and security industry. Leornardo’s UK arm is making its Edinburgh-based Innovation and Technology Incubator Centre available, while O2 is supplying the network, which will be used to evaluate a range of “Industry 4.0” offerings.
  • Revenues from the various strains of video-on-demand have gone through the roof in Europe over the last decade, a new report from the European Audiovisual Observatory has unsurprisingly found. According to the report, paid-for VoD market (SVoD and TVoD) revenues across Europe have increased from 388.8 million (US$470 million) in 2010 to 11.6 billion ($14 billion) last year, with SVoD being the principal driver of this trend.
  • Hold everything! The landing of Orange‘s AMITIE subsea cable in France, as foolishly reported in yesterday’s edition of Eurobites, has been put on hold because the weather is currently merde in that neck of the woods, as indeed it is in our neck of the woods too. Those involved will now wait a few days until the sun comes out.

    Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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