Intelligent CIO Europe Issue 15 - Page 7

NEWS BT becomes first global telco to receive domestic licenses in China B T has announced that it has become the first international telecommunications company to receive nationwide licences from the China Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. The two ‘value added licences’; China nationwide Domestic IP-VPN licence and China nationwide Internet Service Provider (ISP) licence, enable BT China Communications Limited to contract directly with its customers in the country and bill them in local currency. between the governments of the PRC and the UK, we are now able to offer a nationwide service in China that can be scaled up to match the ambitions and needs of our customers. Being able to service and bill locally significantly simplifies the process of delivering connectivity and other communication services. It is what our customers expect from us and we are very grateful for the opportunity to do this.” International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox, MP, said: “I am very pleased that close cooperation between the UK and Chinese governments has resulted in BT securing these licences which will enable it to operate across the country. This major milestone exemplifies the vital work of my international economic department to open up markets and ensure that UK firms are represented on the global stage.” The value-added licences represent a major step for BT in China where many of its multinational customers require secure and reliable connectivity to expand within the country. Bas Burger, CEO of Global Services, BT, said: “We are delighted with this major benefit for our customers. Thanks to cooperation ///////////////// UK utility companies’ days are numbered according to research W hile utility companies have greater access to consumers than ever before, the majority of UK customers still feel they are being left in the dark, according to research from Quadient. This spells bad news for traditional utility providers – with 91% of consumers willing to switch utility provider, many believe that the days of large, traditional utility companies are numbered. their utility providers did enough to contact them the last time services were disrupted, such as during the ‘Beast from the East’. This is despite companies having more customer data than ever: yet three quarters (75%) of consumers said their own data isn’t used to help them at all – and worse, 14% say this is despite their provider promising to do so. In a survey of 2,486 UK consumers aged 16 or older, fewer than a quarter (23%) believe Consumers are unlikely to put up with this for long – more than half (52%) feel they have more power in their relationship with utility companies than they did five years ago, with the vast majority willing to switch their utility provider if they feel dissatisfied. Perhaps most concerning for traditional utility companies, 43% of consumers have already stopped using traditional providers in favour of an alternative or are planning to, while a further 41% believe things will get much harder for them. “Today’s consumers have less and less patience for businesses that don’t know how to use their information – and none at all for those that don’t meet their own promises,” said Mustafa Atik, Utilities Expert at Quadient. “As new utility companies offer incentives such as a more personal service, companies must look at what consumers are demanding and find a way to meet – and ideally exceed – their needs, delivering a first-class customer experience.” INTELLIGENTCIO 7