BTwatch
This release
: #305
June-July 2019: 98pp
Releases/year: 10+
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EXECUTIVE BRIEF

GROUP

MANAGEMENT UPDATE: FY18-19: Jansen looks forward with big ideas, little detail [p.6]

  • Putting the 'I' in team, Jansen sets out aspirations
  • BT Group, financial highlights, FY18-19
  • Jansen shows where BT is falling behind the competition
  • Employee contribution under Jansen scrutiny
  • More detail to be demanded in coming quarters
  • Potential fault lines probed by analysts
  • Hail to the technology chiefs

AGM: Divisional breakdown: Consumer still doing the heavy lifting [p.11]

  • BT Group, performance by unit, FY18-19 (adjusted)*
  • FY19-20 guidance: going down, but preparing to go up
  • Dividend stable for now
  • Rumours suggest board dividend split

Financial reports: Orange sells last BT shares [p.14]

Restructuring: Labour considering BT renationalisation [p.15]

  • BT steps back on ultrafast target, promises leap forward
  • Opportunity to move fast by the mid-20s
  • Selley calls for more government support in fibre rollout
  • What now for G.fast?
  • Jansen pitches share ownership to shift BT culture
  • Jansen settling employee nerves
  • New CEO, new BT branding
  • New brand may reverse BT's marketing value decline

BT TSO: Government releases £40m more for 5G trials [p.23]

  • Simplifying planning goals
  • MoD spectrum freed up
  • Still dithering on Huawei

Strategy

PARTNERS: McRae talks-up cloud partner capabilities [p.25]

  • Watson also pondering nature of BT relationship with cloud players

SUPPLIERS: BT recruits Juniper for Network Cloud [p.27]

  • BT keeps up Huawei defence
  • Nokia distances itself from CTO Huawei comments

REGULATORY: BT finally confirmed as main USO provider for broadband [p.31]

  • No universal quick fix
  • FWA at the heart of USO

PEOPLE: People movement highlights [p.33]

DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION WORLD 2019

TM FORUM: DTW19 underlines need for collaboration and speed [p.37]

  • Higham among the high-flyers
  • Get the full Digital Transformation World 2019 Special Report
  • Collaboration a constant in tumultuous times
  • Foundations for 5G (and maintaining relevance)
  • A living framework

TRANSFORMATION: Higham's people-centric IT transformation mission [p.41]

  • FromHereOn role in rebooting BT IT
  • Higham showing the way on cultural change…
  • … Human-centred design at the core…
  • … and worlds beyond IT to conquer
  • Tangible benefits beginning to materialise
  • A role to play in Jansen's new BT vision?

PARTNERS: BearingPoint in the mix as a digital catalyst [p.45]

  • Partnering BT on a winding path towards the public cloud

PROFILE: EXFO: EXFO offers assurance in changing world [p.48]

  • About EXFO's Service Assurance division
  • Strategic priorities for an automated future
  • Change as a constant in virtual world
  • Telenor partnership highlights common cause
  • Passive potential runs deep
  • Three UK showcases assurance for virtualised infrastructure
  • Catalyst contributions provide additional proof
  • 5G and a more consultative way of doing business for vendors and operators

CONSUMER

5G: EE stormz into 5G [p.56]

  • Launch party -- hit and miss
  • EE and 5G: facts and figures
  • Three vendors in running for BT 5G core
  • Rivals snapping at EE's heels

Digital Voice: Digital Voice moves to beta trial [p.59]

Pricing and tariffs: EE refreshes tariffs: axes Max; debuts Smart Plans, Swappables, Service Packs [p.60]

Products and services [p.61]

ESN: NAO signals headwinds for ESN [p.62]

  • Predicted problems come to pass
  • NAO report: Key remaining risks
  • New Motorola contract to support effective PTT with EE

LEGAL: Phones 4u 'price-fixing' controversy continues [p.65]

  • Who said what to whom?
  • Peers respond

Content rights [p.68]

Television services; MARKETING: BT signs as lead sponsor for England football team [p.70]

REGULATORY: Ofcom imposes more openness on EE and industry [p.71]

SUPPLIERS: BT TV select Couchbase's NoSQL database solution [p.72.]

ENTERPRISE

INNOVATION: Enterprise demos 5G applications in health sector [p.74]

  • Karonis ponders BT role in service provision

Corporate social responsibility [p.75]

Partners: BT extends NetNumber contract for IP Exchange [p.75]

NETWORKS: Cellnex acquires rights to market services at BT towers [p.76]

GLOBAL SERVICES

SECURITY: BT expands Cyber SOCs across globe [p.78]

  • Ribbon cut at expanded Sydney offices

OPENREACH

DIGITAL NETWORKS: Openreach prepares twin-track digital UK trials [p.81]

  • Key points from Consultation document
  • Salisbury: radar and microducting efficiencies

Regulatory: VDSL: Openreach doubles-up with new ReTx trial [p.86]

  • ECI FTTC cabinets: Huawei swap-out underway?
  • Amber lights flash, but independent Openreach drives on
  • Ofcom puts FTTP ball back in Openreach court

Networks

Products and services

SUPPLIERS: ADVA picks up synchronisation role [p.91]

  • 'Invisible' fibre designed for multi-tenanted buildings

Brexit: Openreach bracing for Brexit [p.92]

FURTHER READING

A

Accenture 50

ADTRAN 18

ADVA Optical Networking 91, 96

Oscilloquartz 91

Alphabet

Google

Android 57

Chromecast 61

YouTube 57, 61

Amartus 47

Amazon 26, 28, 44, 46, 60, 61, 68, 69

Amazon Prime 60, 61, 68

Amazon Web Services 26, 28, 44, 46

Apple 34, 60, 61, 66

Apple Music 60

iPhone 66

Arqiva 69

ASSIA 88

AT&T 38, 72

B

Bank of America-Merrill Lynch 15

BearingPoint 45, 46, 47

Benetton Group 76

British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) 30, 57, 61, 68, 69, 93, 94

iPlayer 61, 68

BT Group 6, 7, 10, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 21, 22, 24, 25, 27, 30, 31, 33, 46, 56, 70, 76, 85, 89, 93

BT Consumer 34, 56, 59, 61

BT Broadband 61

BT Cloud 26, 46

BT Mobile 34

BT Scotland 33

BT TV 22, 61, 69, 72, 94

Plusnet 8, 33, 34

BT Enterprise

BT Ireland 15

BT Redcare 22

BT Wholesale & Ventures 22

InLinkUK 75

IP Exchange 75

BT Global Services 10, 11, 12, 34, 46, 74, 77, 78, 79, 95

BT Espana 15

BT iNet 47, 48, 49, 51, 52

BT Italia 42

BT Technology, Service and Operations 23, 24, 26, 93

Directors

du Plessis, Jan 6, 10, 14

Hoettges, Timotheus 10

EE 8, 11, 14, 24, 32, 33, 34, 42, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 69, 70, 71, 75, 85, 94

Emergency Services Network 34, 62, 94

Executives

Allera, Marc 11, 33, 56

Allwood, Richard 81

Al-Qassab, Zaid 22, 33

Beswick, John 24

Burger, Bas 10

Foster, Kevin 88

Haston, Simon 33

Jeavons, Peter 33

Karonis, Fortis 75

Logan, Mark 91

Lowth, Simon 6, 14

McCall, Greg 24

McRae, Neil 25, 28, 30

Selley, Clive 10, 13, 17, 24, 92

Sherman, Michael 33

Tempest, Alex 76

Watson, Howard 10, 24, 26, 30, 44, 56, 58

Whale, Andy 85

Ex-executives

Patterson, Gavin 6, 7

Openreach 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 16, 17, 18, 19, 24, 31, 33, 34, 59, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 96

GEA-FTTC 82

WLR3 82, 85

C

Capita 34

Cellnex 76, 95

Channel 4 22, 33, 34

Chunghwa Telecom 47

Cisco Systems, Inc. 72

Citrix 46

CK Hutchison

Three Group

Three Ireland 15

Three UK 52, 59

Comcast 72

Confederation of British Industry (CBI) 19

Conservative Party (UK) 29

D

Deutsche Telekom 10, 38, 45, 65

T-Mobile 47

Digital Economy Act (UK) 24

Dixons Carphone 66

E

ECI 86, 87, 88, 96

Emirates Airline 68

Ericsson 47

EXFO 37, 38, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53

F

Facebook 94

Fédération Int. de Football Assoc. (FIFA) 70

World Cup 70, 94

Football Association 57, 68, 70, 94

G

Glastonbury Festival 69

Google 25, 26, 28, 38, 46, 58

Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ, UK) 30

H

Home Office (UK) 62, 63, 64

House of Commons

Public Accounts Committee 62, 85

HTC 57

Huawei Technologies 24, 29, 30, 56, 57, 58, 86, 87, 88, 93, 94, 96

I

IBM 46, 50

Infonova 46

Information Commissioner's Office (UK) 69

Infosys 47

Intel 47, 88

ITV 68, 69

J

John Lewis Partnership 85

Juniper Networks 27, 93

K

Kingston Communications (KCOM) 31

L

LG 57

Liberty Global

Virgin Media 8, 15

M

M&G Prudential 34

Microsoft 26, 46

Ministry of Defence (MoD) 24

Motorola Solutions 62, 63, 64

Airwave 63

MTV 60, 61

N

National Audit Office 62, 94

National Health Service (NHS, UK) 74

Netflix 61, 69

NetNumber 75, 95

Nokia 30, 74, 87, 88, 93

NTT 47

O

Ofcom 17, 31, 32, 71, 85, 88, 89, 90, 93, 94, 96

LLU 82

Strategic Review of the Telecoms Sector 85

USO 31, 32

White, Sharon 85

Wholesale Line Rental 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 96

OFS 92, 96

OnePlus 57

Ontology Systems 49

Orange 14, 15, 40, 47, 52, 65, 93

P

Phones4u 65, 66, 67, 94

PricewaterhouseCoopers 65

Q

Qualcomm 57

S

Samsung 57

Sckipio 88

Sony 69

Spotify 60

SSE plc 34

T

TalkTalk Telecom Group 8, 61, 69, 88

Technology

3G 39

4K (Ultra HD TV) 57, 61

5G 9, 11, 13, 18, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 29, 37, 39, 40, 47, 48, 49, 50, 52, 53, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 69, 74, 75, 76, 91, 93, 94, 95

Artificial intelligence 37

Broadband 12, 18, 31, 32, 34, 57, 61, 82, 86, 90, 93, 94, 96

DSL 82, 86, 88, 96

Ethernet 27, 57, 82, 84, 91

Fibre 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 18, 24, 26, 31, 32, 34, 49, 59, 61, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, 89, 90, 92, 96

Fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) 86, 87, 96

Fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) 16, 18, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 90, 96

G.fast 16, 18, 82, 84, 86, 88, 96

GSM 34

IP 59, 75, 81, 82, 83, 95, 96

ISDN 82, 84

Linux 28

LLU 82

LTE 91

PSTN 82

R&D 81

VDSL 86, 88, 96

VoD 69

Wi-Fi 27, 57

Telefónica 15, 38, 65, 67, 76

O2 UK 8, 59, 65, 66

Telenor 49, 51

Thomson Reuters Corp. 34

TM Forum 37, 41, 45

TVPlayer 61

U

UEFA 10, 70

UKTV 94

Unilever 33

Unite 58

V

Verizon Communications 47, 66, 72

VMware 46

Vodafone 8, 15, 38, 40, 45, 47, 56, 59, 65, 66, 67, 75, 76, 88, 93

UK 56, 59, 65, 66, 75

W

Walt Disney Company, The

ESPN 68

Y

YouView 69

  • The results marked Jansen’s major public bow as head of the Group. New CEO was frank on the challenges facing BT, and equally honest in recognising no easy answers.
  • Another year of falling revenue and EBITDA framed as a managed retreat in non-strategic areas, and in line with transformation plans.
  • Spending on capex up, while opex is also rising as Group says cost-cutting savings are being channelled into creating more efficient systems.

BT Group published its financial results for the year to 31 March 2019 (FY18-19), recording another year of moderate overall decline as transitional work continues with individual divisions in various stages of reinvention.

The event was the first major public appearance of Group Chief Executive Philip Jansen, who took the helm in February 2019, and, as such, the focus of the presentation was even more forward-looking than usual; with promises and plans for a new approach to operations to the fore.

It is important to remember, however, that the Group was already on a transformation path prior to the new CEO’s arrival, and at present Jansen is generally committed to pursuing the strategy that BT unveiled only one year ago, moulded by his predecessor Gavin Patterson, and anointed by the Group Chairman Jan du Plessis (BTwatch, #296). There were signs that the revised strategy is beginning to have an impact on operations – Chief Financial Officer Simon Lowth was keen to highlight the scale of work completed over the past year.

Nevertheless, the difference that the new leader is bringing is a sense of urgency, and Jansen appears itching to move more quickly, despite the constraints that the existing structure of the telco presents.

Putting the ‘I’ in team, Jansen sets out aspirations

The results event was very much The Jansen Show, with Chairman du Plessis notably absent this year.

Jansen was relaxed and assured at his first major outing in his new role. In business casual dress with no tie (even Gavin Patterson, renowned for open-necked shirts, would don a tie for the big formal occasions…), he started with personal observations and commitments, returning to “how I see things” as the starting point for the transformation effort. His early exploration of the mechanics of BT Group had led Jansen to determine that the company needs to move forward with change more boldly, and at a faster pace, and that this will require BT to address the complexity of its operational structure.

Jansen’s first impressions have been of an overly complicated business, and he presented a visual demonstration of a “spaghetti chart” that illustrated the bureaucracy and multiple hand-off processes involved in decision-making in the business.

In talking greater efficiency, Jansen was adamant that there was not a quick fix that could be applied by cutting staff numbers – at least initially. As demonstrated by the subsequent commitment to a renewed employee share ownership programme (see separate report), Jansen is initially focused on delegating decision-making control to more BT employees, to empower staff and remove red-tape.

For more on this story, including Jansen’s views on exactly where BT is falling behind the competition, subscribe to the full June-July release of BTwatch. 

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