Kitz Forum

Announcements => News Articles => Topic started by: Black Sheep on November 25, 2014, 07:09:55 PM

Title: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on November 25, 2014, 07:09:55 PM
http://www.cityam.com/1416825647/bt-confirms-it-wants-buy-o2-back-telefonica
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on November 25, 2014, 08:24:39 PM
I must admit that it seems rather strange that BT havent got a mobile interest.   Especially when they are venturing into other sectors such as TV and sport etc. 

Quote
In 2005, it was bought by Spanish operator Telefonica for £17.7bn.

I wonder how much it would cost to buy it back.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Dray on November 25, 2014, 08:32:22 PM
£10bn?
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on November 25, 2014, 08:43:12 PM
Woooooooah

Quote
BT has confirmed it is in "highly preliminary" talks to acquire O2’s business in the UK in a £6 billion deal.

The telecoms firm said it was also in talks with a second UK network, which it did not identify, but Sky News has reported that the mystery network is EE.


https://bdaily.co.uk/technology/25-11-2014/bt-in-preliminary-talks-to-buy-o2-in-a-6-billion-deal/
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: burakkucat on November 25, 2014, 08:57:14 PM
In my mind it only seems like yesterday that BT Cellnet was sold off!  ::)
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: UncleUB on November 25, 2014, 10:36:36 PM
God help us.. :-X
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on November 25, 2014, 11:56:49 PM
I'd much rather it went to a UK company rather than some foreign organisation.  BT is one of our very few remaining companies that hasnt been sold out overseas.  Plus they provide proper jobs and apprenticeships... not saying owt about their Indian call centre though  :-X
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Chrysalis on November 26, 2014, 03:14:02 AM
http://www.cityam.com/1416825647/bt-confirms-it-wants-buy-o2-back-telefonica

I guess not surprising, there is a reason BT purchased 4G frequency.
Title: Re: New acquisition ??
Post by: pedro492 on November 27, 2014, 02:20:57 AM
Rather than a buyout, this feels more like a merger or a partnership between BT and Telefónica.

BT doesn't have the cash to buy O2 outright. And it apparently won't fund the purchase through borrowing since that would impact its credit rating.

Instead, BT wants to part-merge with Telefónica in an equity swap.

Quote from: Daily Telegraph (25 Nov):
[A]ccording to reports from Spain, Telefonica would seek a mix of cash to pay down its massive debts and BT stock in exchange for its UK arm [O2].

Ivan Palacios, an analyst at Moody’s, said that an all-cash deal would have a negative effect on BT’s Baa2 credit rating. However, he added that he would not expect BT to aggressively use debt financing as "it would contradict its stated ambition of achieving a Baa1 rating". As a result he said that BT was likely to use equity "to reduce the amount of debt needed".

Exchanging its own shares (through a new share issue), together with cash, to fund the acquisition of O2 from Telefónica.  In the deal on the table, Telefónica would end up owning about a 20% stake in BT, making it by far the largest shareholder. [1] [2]

Quote from: Wall Street Journal (24 Nov):
The two companies confirmed the talks after a report in the Spanish media said Telefónica was negotiating taking a 20% stake in BT in exchange for O2.

That's why this is more a merger than buy-out.

Unlike Telefónica which is mired in debt, BT remains relatively cash-rich. Thanks, in no small part, to those huge BDUK subsidies it receives from the British taxpayer.  BT's full year profits for 2013 were reported as £2 billion on group revenues of £18 billion.

It's rumoured that Telefónica would use the cash proceeds from the O2 sale as vulture funds to move in on the Ibero-American telecoms market, a region ripe for economic looting (aka "liberalising")    In an equity tie-up with Telefónica, British Telecom would become a partner in that economic imperialism.

Again, from the Wall Street Journal [1]:
Quote
For Madrid-based Telefónica, it would free up cash for investments in markets where it has a stronger competitive position, such as in Latin America’s largest economies.

Much the same strategy is being pursued in Latin- or Ibero-America by the so-called Inter-Alpha Group of British banks.  [the Ibero-American nations being the former Spanish and Portuguese colonies of the Americas].

British banks have created similar strategic partnerships, through equity swaps, with their distressed counterparts in Spain and Portugal (Banco Santander, Banco Espírito Santo/Novo Banco, Banco Bilbao Vizcaya, and so on).  Those strategic partnerships gaining the Inter-Alpha banks access to that largely untapped yet potentially lucrative Ibero-American market. [3] [4]

The proposed merger/tie-up between British Telecom and its Spanish counterpart Telefónica, and Telefónica's proposal to plough the O2 sale proceeds into Ibero-America, should be viewed with the same concern as the activities of the Inter-Alpha banking group in that economic region.

[1] http://online.wsj.com/articles/bt-in-talks-to-buy-telefonicas-u-k-unit-1416824657
[2] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/mediatechnologyandtelecoms/telecoms/11254228/BT-shareholders-back-10bn-mobile-takeover-plans.html
[3] http://www.larouchepub.com/eiw/public/2010/2010_1-9/2010-07/2010-07/pdf/14-17_3707.pdf
[4] http://www.larouchepub.com/eiw/public/2010/2010_1-9/2010-07/2010-07/pdf/16-17_3707.pdf
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on December 06, 2014, 09:49:31 AM
http://www.mobilenewscwp.co.uk/2014/12/05/bt-back-to-where-it-started-from/#.VILOZnW_S3Q.facebook
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on December 07, 2014, 02:47:21 PM
Quote
BT last week confirmed it had been approached by O2 and EE with a view to acquiring their mobile connection bases.

So it looks like Sky were correct in their speculation of EE as well as O2
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on December 14, 2014, 08:46:59 PM
http://www.trustedreviews.com/news/bt-to-choose-between-o2-and-ee-takeover-early-next-week
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on December 14, 2014, 08:53:36 PM
Quote
“BT is not expected to take much longer to choose between the two,”
Read more at http://www.trustedreviews.com/news/bt-to-choose-between-o2-and-ee-takeover-early-next-week#P8CSXEXCvP7yI8ch.99

Thanks BS.   So they have to chose one and not both.   Will be interesting then to see which they decide on as EE has the much larger mobile network with far more customers (off the top of my head - not checked)
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: broadstairs on December 14, 2014, 09:58:29 PM
Well I hope they go for O2 because I'm not keen on EE who I'm with coming under the BT banner especially as I recently took an 18 month contract. O2 has a lousy signal round here but EE is good and I dont trust BT not to b**ls it up.

Stuart
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Dray on December 15, 2014, 05:22:24 PM
http://www.itv.com/news/update/2014-12-15/bt-announces-plans-for-ee-takeover/
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on December 15, 2014, 05:28:34 PM
Stuart won't sleep now .......  ;) ;D
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: broadstairs on December 15, 2014, 05:44:12 PM
Stuart won't sleep now .......  ;) ;D

Nah I wont.... Sorry to say but the only telco I have ever had big problems with was BT, most of them can be annoying but BT takes the biscuit so I'm not looking forward to them running EE.

Stuart
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: broadstairs on December 15, 2014, 05:48:17 PM
Kamal Ahmed on the BBC here (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-30481133) makes some very valid points about this deal and how it might fall on the hurdle of the regulator.

Stuart
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: UncleUB on December 15, 2014, 06:51:16 PM
http://www.itv.com/news/update/2014-12-15/bt-announces-plans-for-ee-takeover/

Get ready for a hike in line rental.. ;D
Title: Re: New aqcisutiion ??
Post by: pedro492 on December 15, 2014, 07:31:16 PM
Sorry to say but the only telco I have ever had big problems with was BT, most of them can be annoying but BT takes the biscuit so I'm not looking forward to them running EE.

O2 customers had a lucky escape.   Back in the late-nineties, I was a customer of BT Cellnet, before BT spun it off as O2, to raise a few shekels.  Not the best experience for many of us.

BT Cellnet had just launched a novel tariff which initially attracted me.   Offering "unlimited" calls to one geographical number, for a fixed monthly fee of £15 in addition to other call charges.

However, it soon became clear that BT's definition of "unlimited" was very different to the customers' definition, and indeed very different to the common meaning of the word.

Just two or three months into this novel deal and BT were imposing tight limits on the number of calls you could actually make for free.

BT Cellnet customers found that their "free" calls were suddenly being barred with mysterious "network error" messages on the phone.  BT initially denied that it was placing any limits; instead offering spurious technical explanations for why those calls were not getting through.  Cock-up rather than conspiracy, or so it claimed.

However, as more and more customers reported problems, BT Cellnet eventually had to admit the truth. It was indeed unilaterally reneging on the "unlimited" aspect of the deal.   Unfortunately, except for those free calls, the BT Cellnet tariff was otherwise very expensive, and had nothing else to commend it.

Punters, including me, weren't at all happy. We set up a web forum to discuss strategy. The national press picked up on the scandal.  With the Sunday Times covering it, as did a Watchdog-style consumer programme on ITV.  Yours truly was invited to be interviewed for TV, but stage fright won the day.  :'(   In any case, Great Aunt Beatty refused to budge.  Intransigence is, after all, her middle name.

What really piqued my curiosity with this particular tariff was the possibility of using it for Call-Bridging...

Take two POTS lines in a consumer premises; and take one PCI telephony card with two FXO ports. With suitably configured PC telephony software (e.g. Asterisk) it should be possible to make unlimited mobile calls for free, or very low cost, to anywhere in the world. (Recall, this was still a few years before VOIP calling had come of age)  :-X   

The mobile user would simply dial into the inbound FXO port (for free), and enter on his mobile keypad (generating mid-call DTMF tones) the number he wished to call.  The telephony software would then interpret those DTMF tones, and place an outbound call on the second FXO port, before bridging those two circuits - inbound and outbound.  Sadly I never got to test this out as BT Cellnet blocked the cellphone altogether (and subsequent replacements!) and told me NEVER to call them again.

And that, dear kitizens, is my rather short-lived yet deeply unsatisfactory experience with British Telecom and its mobile phone services.  Once bitten, twice shy! 8)
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pedro492 on December 16, 2014, 02:36:47 AM
Get ready for a hike in line rental.. ;D

That's what the Daily Mail says too; brace yourselves for big price rises, because it won't be BT shareholders funding this £12 billion takeover :o  [1]

Quote from: Daily Mail (15 Dec 2014)
BT bills could rise after company continues its expansion plans with £12billion bid for mobile phone giant EE
...
The deal could make BT a one-stop shop for households seeking a landline, mobile contract, broadband internet and premium TV services.
...
BT has recently undergone aggressive expansion, buying rights to Premier League football for its new sports channels. This has been funded in part by repeated, inflation-busting rises for existing customers – which began just weeks after the launch of BT Sport. This month saw standard line rental for Direct Debit customers rise by a further 6 per cent.
...
At least half of the £12.5billion bid would be paid in cash, raising the spectre of further price hikes.

Analyst Dan Ridsdale of Technology Media Telecoms said the deal would also 'reduce churn – as it is much more complex to change service providers when a customer is using them for multiple services'.
...
BT, won Money Mail readers' Wooden Spoon Award this year for the worst customer service in Britain.  The firm, which has nearly 10million landline and broadband customers, admitted that it had struggled to deal with a flood of new accounts after the launch of BT Sport.

BT plans to give Deutsche Telekom and Orange [owners of EE] a mixture of cash and shares; the firms would respectively hold 12 per cent and 4 per cent stakes in BT.

However, analysts said regulators should block BT from taking such a dominant position over rivals such as Sky and Virgin.

Barry Collins of PC Pro said: 'Even the notoriously spineless Ofcom must be concerned about one company having such influence over the entire telecoms market. BT simply cannot be allowed to dominate both fixed-line and mobile.'

--

Elsewhere, the Financial Times reckons that if this BT/EE merger or takeover goes ahead, there may be further consolidations in the UK/EU telecoms sector.  Again, bad news for competition and pricing for UK consumers. [2]

Quote from: Financial Times (15 Dec 2014):
Spain’s Telefónica faces the most immediate challenge in the UK market, having had its British mobile operator O2 passed over by BT and lacking any other offerings to consumers in the market.
..
The Spanish group has stated its desire to sell or merge O2 with a rival with mobile or fixed-line capabilities as it focuses on continental Europe and Latin America. Analysts say that could make Hutchison Whampoa, the operator of Three, an attractive partner for Telefónica. Such a move would alter the competitive landscape in the UK market from four operators to three and give a combined Telefónica-Three greater scale. Alternatively, Telefónica could acquire TalkTalk, the UK market’s smallest pay TV, fixed line and broadband operator, a move that would allow it to offer bundled services.

We are with Three (via MVNO Globalgig) and TalkTalk, and would be sad to see either fall to Telefonica.  Despite the chequered background to Three's parent, Hutchison Whampoa - its financing being linked, purportedly, to hot money from organised crime; [4] Hutchison's chairman is Li Ka-Shing, "Hong Kong's leading narco­-billionaire" [5] -  Three have nevertheless provided an excellent service for some years now.  I can't see that success continuing under Telefonica ownership. 

In its second in a series of articles about the BT/EE merger, the FT also reports the following:

Quote from: Financial Times (15 Dec 2014):
BT had ambitious plans to create its own mobile network using its home broadband hubs to undercut the big mobile networks. But just months before the launch of its own plans, BT has instead decided to join their ranks by buying an existing player to create a telecoms group of formidable strength in the UK market.

That's something new: BT proposing to use our home broadband hubs as pico- or nano-cells to improve cellular coverage.

I got this vision of BT cross-subsidising its mobile services by using its fibre broadband network as a budget backhaul.  In rural areas we've already generously funded that fibre network through our BDUK taxpayer-subsidies. So we should expect to be compensated if BT goes down that route when rolling out its mobile network.

Politics aside, BT could eradicate many mobile reception black-spots by connecting microcell base-stations to pole-mounted distribution points across its POTS network. [6]

BT's VDSL2/fibre network would provide the cellular backhauls over spare copper pairs between those pole-mounted distribution points and the street cabinets, and then over fibre to the cell network's aggregation points.

Powering those pole-mounted cellular base-stations - some of which would be very rural - could be solved using reverse-powered feeding circuitry; a similar solution to that proposed for Fibre To The Distribution Point. With multiple copper pairs bonded together to support the load needed to power the microcell base-station apparatus at the top of the pole.  [7]

(http://i.imgur.com/mkmT0Px.jpg)
Pole-mounted micro-cell base-station

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[1] http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2875369/BT-bills-rise-company-continues-expansion-plans-12billion-bid-mobile-phone-giant-EE.html
[2] http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/0c7e13b6-8482-11e4-bae9-00144feabdc0.html
[3] http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/220991a6-847d-11e4-bae9-00144feabdc0.html
[4] http://www.larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1999/eirv26n51-19991224/eirv26n51-19991224_076-trilaterals_incite_china_bashers.pdf
[5] http://www.larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1993/eirv20n28-19930723/eirv20n28-19930723_004-george_soros_the_central_banks_s.pdf
[6] http://www.thedasforum.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/DAS-And-Small-Cell-Technologies-Distinguished-2_4_13.pdf
[7] https://www.lantiq.com/media-center/news/press/235/
 
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Chrysalis on December 16, 2014, 06:19:25 AM
I think BT feel invincible given the lack of ofcom action on the abusive line rental price increases, currently line rental is an ATM for BT, they can buy a company and get the money back by adding 10% to line rental every year.

The problem I have with multi play providers is that it is usually the case the customers not taking up all services pay extra for their individual services and are effectively subsidising the rest.  We e.g. see this now with line rental and broadband, pretty much every major isp now will add a surcharge to the broadband fee if there is no line rental.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: c6em on December 16, 2014, 08:39:55 AM
This might have been fueled by the EU informally indicating that consolidation, possibly some exclusivity and of course price rises to fund the significant investment needed is the way forward.
In short: if you want it all whether that is 5G access everywhere or 1Gbps to each home then - then you are going to have to start to pay for it.
 
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on December 16, 2014, 09:44:25 AM
I do think we should keep a sense of reality into all of the 'BT are spawn of the devil' threads of late.  At the end of the day they are a company who have shareholders and a duty to remain a major player in the market.

Im quite happy to point out stuff where they go wrong but TBH their CS is no better nor worse than the other major players.  Im well aware that I myself have berated them in another thread myself because I do think what they are doing with the DNS thing is wrong, but to put it into perspective weve all seen things go wrong with TT & Sky & Virgin, who also keep their customers in the dark.  I dont agree with port blocking and stealth routing.  I dont like such things as nanny state filtering and I was a strong adversary again Phorm.  BT get all the attention in such matters yet both TT and Virgin etc have also done the same thing.

Ive also been hit by what I call the false 'unlimited' in the past and received warnings, but all the major players also did it.  'Unlimited' whether its calls, texts, bandwidth, time online has all come under fire at some time in the past.  The problem is it usually starts off as a good idea, then some people take it to the limits and when the company start to lose money then they call a halt to it. 

Of course BT are the major player, because not too long ago they owned practically ALL of the UK lines. When it comes to broadband Sky and TT arent really too far behind.  Virgin is the major player when it comes to cable.   Would there really have been such a fuss if one of the others bought out EE?   Wasnt it EE that approached BT.   Why shouldn't BT enter the mobile market?  The way we communicate these days has changed and when it comes to consumer markets, more and more people use their mobile phones.

The press speculation makes me laugh.  On one hand you have reports saying that it will mean cheaper calls and it will be good for competition in the market, then on the other this morning you have the Daily Mail saying less competition and price hikes.

As regards to company buyouts and mergers, this is not just limited to the telecoms industry, its happening world-wide be it banking, insurance, supermarkets, stores, utilities or whatever. Its the way the world is headed. :/

Comments such as 'concerns over backhaul services".  So someone tell me what the big deal is here, am I missing something?   Because it sure doesnt mean that the mobile market will get it for free.  BT is Chinese walled in so many departments, so BT mobile will have to pay for their transit just like any other organisation.

I dont agree with everything that BT do, but would it have been any better for sky or any other to have bought EE.  EE were obviously up for sale and someone had to buy.  BT appeared to be all set for buying O2 at one point.  It makes sense that they should enter the mobile market.   Just trying to inject some form of balance into the debate.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on December 16, 2014, 09:45:50 AM
Quote
BT's VDSL2/fibre network would provide the cellular backhauls over spare copper pairs between those pole-mounted distribution points and the street cabinets, and then over fibre to the cell network's aggregation points.

Isnt that already being trialled.  Im sure Ive seen mention of it recently being put into action.

----------
ETA

I think I may have read your post wrong.   I thought you meant cellular to provide the link between exchange and dslam in the cab.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: broadstairs on December 16, 2014, 10:00:22 AM
I think the problem is more to do with a toothless regulator, OFCOM has not been effective in regulating the comms industry. I also think that the likely scenario of more expensive mobile is highly likely. The only way you will get cheaper mobile deals with BT will be to end up taking a package containing most (or perhaps all) of their offerings. For me this will not save anything because I am not interested in bundled TV for example and I'm sure that will be the same for a significant proportion of the customer base. Bundles like these are only worth it IF you need all of the included offerings, it just means those who dont buy bundles are subsidising the rest. I read this morning in the paper that the BBC may be in discussions with BT (and perhaps others) about hiving off parts of Wimbledon's annual tournament to pay TV.

It might put up prices but I for one believe OFCOM should make all companies in this area charge the actual costs for services to all customers and not permit subsidising one service from another. However this is never likely to happen  :(

Stuart
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on December 16, 2014, 11:28:29 AM
Quote
OFCOM has not been effective in regulating the comms industry.

and IMHO putting too much attention in the wrong areas. 
Take for example the 'up to'.  Instead people could perhaps be better educated why a long line is never going to get full wack.  Other countries dont seem to have a problem in this area.  What is it that makes the UK different and also have such a large population that moans like mad when they cant get their full speed using wi-fi.     ::)  OFCOM should also have stamped on the 'Fibre' claims right from the start.  Again we are the only country where we use Fibre Optic to advertise FTTC and cable.   Other countries use the proper terms of  ADSL, VDSL & cable.

Far more important is the ISP's that can hide limited capacity in the 'up to'.  Making the ISPs provide an actual speed is only going to drive down the quality of service because common sense means they will always err on the conservative side, thus in turn if there is a genuine fault, it doesnt count because yeah its ok, its still within the limit.  ???

Quote
I for one believe OFCOM should make all companies in this area charge the actual costs for services to all customers and not permit subsidising one service from another

That I totally agree with.  I have no issue for discounts being given if you buy a multi-package, in fact thats often to be expected.   But say with BTSport, that atm is subsidised by other services.   There must be a fair population like myself who have absolutely no interest in BTSport. Even if I did get it for free Id likely never watch it.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: loonylion on December 16, 2014, 03:13:23 PM
As an EE (formerly Orange) customer, I'm not too happy about this either
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Chrysalis on December 16, 2014, 04:02:12 PM
Quote
OFCOM has not been effective in regulating the comms industry.

and IMHO putting too much attention in the wrong areas. 
Take for example the 'up to'.  Instead people could perhaps be better educated why a long line is never going to get full wack.  Other countries dont seem to have a problem in this area.  What is it that makes the UK different and also have such a large population that moans like mad when they cant get their full speed using wi-fi.     ::)  OFCOM should also have stamped on the 'Fibre' claims right from the start.  Again we are the only country where we use Fibre Optic to advertise FTTC and cable.   Other countries use the proper terms of  ADSL, VDSL & cable.

Far more important is the ISP's that can hide limited capacity in the 'up to'.  Making the ISPs provide an actual speed is only going to drive down the quality of service because common sense means they will always err on the conservative side, thus in turn if there is a genuine fault, it doesnt count because yeah its ok, its still within the limit.  ???

Quote
I for one believe OFCOM should make all companies in this area charge the actual costs for services to all customers and not permit subsidising one service from another

That I totally agree with.  I have no issue for discounts being given if you buy a multi-package, in fact thats often to be expected.   But say with BTSport, that atm is subsidised by other services.   There must be a fair population like myself who have absolutely no interest in BTSport. Even if I did get it for free Id likely never watch it.

Kitz what makes the UK different is a key event that happened in the early 2000s.

Remember when 2mbit adsl was expensive? and the speed affected the price?
Then ofcom did a deal with BT to subsidise the cost of faster speeds with extorniate backhaul utilisation costs.  Now almost everyone in the UK thinks burst speed is free without a cost, but they dont realise its subsidised by backhaul revenue.

Other countries still charge for speed so e.g. 4mbit dsl would be chaper than 16mbit dsl, in that situation the up to isnt so important because if you get crappy speeds you downgrade to the cheaper product, whilst we had a one size fits all approach on speeds.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on December 16, 2014, 06:10:15 PM
Quote
Other countries still charge for speed so e.g. 4mbit dsl would be chaper than 16mbit dsl,


Good point. :)  re other countries, but I thought that changed since adsl2+ and they also have the equivalent products in USA & Aus, but I think you may be correct when it comes to some European countries.  I guess we pay for speed again now with FTTC.


Quote
Kitz what makes the UK different is a key event that happened in the early 2000s.

Remember when 2mbit adsl was expensive? and the speed affected the price?
Then ofcom did a deal with BT to subsidise the cost of faster speeds with extortionate backhaul utilisation costs.

It was Capacity Based Charging - link (http://www.kitz.co.uk/adsl/CBC.htm) that brought down the cost of 2Mb adsl in Nov 2004.  I remember that time quite well.  Plusnet was the first ISP to offer 2Mb at an affordable price for consumers because they used CBC.   I also remember very well the mess they got into because they suddenly became swamped with 2Mbps customers using 100's of GB per month. ;)

I cant however recall BT doing a deal with OFCOM re Capacity Based Charging  ??? It was CBC that enabled the price of 2Mb to come down and it was left up to the ISPs whether they wanted to use traditional, CBC or UBC.  CBC effectively took contention away from BT's network and placed it into the hands of the ISP.   Most ISPs eventually opted for CBC and this is when the ISPs started cramming more users on the central pipes.

Back then* I wrote an article on Capacity Based Charging which became quite widely branded around and quoted by many other sites such as TBB and other broadband and technical sites.   I dont have a copy of the original capacity report as it was written for somewhere else, but there's a summary here (http://www.kitz.co.uk/adsl/capacitycalc.htm) and a slightly edited version of the original report here (http://usergroup.plus.net/report_pncapacity.php).   
 

I do recall all the hot debating though regarding OFCOM & BT re the Margin Squeeze Test.  This was OFCOM forcing BTs hand and backhaul bandwidth becoming even more expensive.  OFCOM made BTw charge the IPstream ISPs more for bandwidth on the centrals.  Basically they said bandwidth was too cheap and unfair for the datastream providers (who were also in a mess with contention anyway).  Ahh the days of MST and every Tom_Dick_&_Harry_ISP now having to introduce caps. 

MST was not popular - it was brought about by OFCOM and it wouldn't make sense to introduce the MST if BT had recently cut a deal with OFCOM about subsidising backhaul. - [ 1 (http://www.thinkbroadband.com/news/1799-bts-price-rises-the-saga-continues.html), 2 (http://www.thinkbroadband.com/news/1855-ispa-bt-should-think-again-about-proposed-usage-based-charging.html), 3 (http://www.thinkbroadband.com/news/1834-ukif-responds-to-ofcom-support-of-broadband-price-hike.html) ]

----
*The period 2004-2008 was at a time when my knowledge on BT's network was pretty damn hot, these days my memory isnt as good but I really cant recall OFCOM being anything to do with CBC, just the MST.   It was during that period (really trying not to blow my own trumpet here) but it was often acknowleged that I knew more about BT's network than any other outsider and that included some ISPs and Saffy.  I get the impression these days that some think Im a dumb blonde who knows nada, & forget where my knowledge is strongest.
 
Finally, Just to clarify before I get accussed of being a shill.   I have no connection with BT. Im not nor have I ever have been paid or employed by BT.  Whilst I may have been asked to give talks & presentations to BT staff Ive have always declined.  I am not the type of person who enjoys standing up in front of a room full of people, plus I enjoy my position in that I can say what I think when I like.  All that I know has been obtained through much study, research, having an equiring mind and being respected enough to know that if I did ask questions then I wouldnt abuse or twist any of the facts... oh and lots and lots of hard work.


Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Chrysalis on December 16, 2014, 09:09:49 PM
Yeah basically UBC was cheap backhauls but expensive ports, CBC was cheap ports (2mbit same price as 512kbit) but expensive backhaul.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pedro492 on December 17, 2014, 12:55:29 AM
Of course BT are the major player, because not too long ago they owned practically ALL of the UK lines. When it comes to broadband Sky and TT arent really too far behind.

Not too far behind?!  There is no effective competition any more in fixed-wire internet.  Since the advent of FTTC, BT is once again a shameless monopoly.  Every bit as over-powering as it was in the days of the state-run GPO.

Then came Local Loop Unbundling (LLU), a breath of fresh air.  Introducing that much-needed competition in broadband delivery, LLU spurred investment from new players like Sky and TalkTalk.   But any benefits we did gain from LLU are, today, all but lost.

Since BT's rollout of FTTC/VDSL2, Sky and TalkTalk are reduced once again to the ignominious ranks of humble BT Resellers.

Through its Openreach division, BT has regained near total control of that all-critical "golden mile" from (and including) the DSLAM to the Consumer Premises.

Once again, BT has secured a vice-like grip over internet delivery in the UK, just as it had in the 1990s. Today it's creaming off enormous profits from those resellers (60% of BT Group profits come via Openreach).   That's maybe why we're hearing murmurs in the press calling for Openreach to be spun-off from the rest of the BT Group. That perhaps being an unspoken condition of BT winning regulatory approval for its merger with EE??

Sadly, it's the consumer who will feel the pain here.  Through that lack of competition, high costs, poor product choice, low availability, long installation lead-times, lack of future investment and failing infrastructure, slow fault repairs, heavily skewed service contracts, and so on.

We can recognise now that BT intends to dominate the entertainment element of so-called "Quad Play".   Abandoning its agreements with Arquiva which had been delivering BT's premium TV channels over the terrestrial digital video broadcasting (DVB-T) platform.   BT now intends to use its monopoly control of the local loop to deliver its premium entertainment content wholly over its own IP-based platform. It has already gained exclusive broadcasting rights for major sporting events; its intention now is to further freeze out competition in that sector from the likes of Virgin, TalkTalk and Sky; the latter is reportedly pulling the plug altogether on its syndicated NowTV streaming platform of premium TV content.

Through ineffective almost non-existent market regulation, broadband competition in the UK is all but doomed.   BT has secured Full Spectrum Dominance of the battlefield, as the military would say.   That it now intends to dominate the UK's cellular market as well, through a merger with EE, the largest operator, is yet another nail in the coffin for competition in Britain's telecoms industry.   This is very bad news, and should be resisted by all conscientious consumers!  >:D
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: c6em on December 17, 2014, 08:41:25 AM
If BTOR is spun off as a pure infrastructure company then I would expect it from then on to require lines to make a profit for them on an individual basis.
So rural lines which cost more to maintain should be paying a lot more for receiving a service than urban lines.

This would follow on from what happened when B.Gas was split up.
Previously when it was all owned as one B.Gas would put a pipe into you at a nominal cost or even free in the full knowledge that it would receive ad infinitum the revenues from your house's use of the gas.
Now the pipelines have been split off into being managed by Transco as a totally separate company while one of the energy companies gets the money from your use of the gas.
So not surprisingly now if you want a gas line put in you pay the full cost of doing so to Transco.

On your other point I fundamentally disagree with your thoughts on competition.
Excess competition in the UK broadband market has reduced prices to a level where the service is getting worse.
Broadband is now sold in the UK on a least price basis at all cost and a £1 per month rise in broadband prices is good for 25 pages of outrage on ISP's forums while the adjacent threads still merrily complain about lack of investment, things not being improved, lack of staff, long lead times and the rest.
How on earth people expect investment when they are just forever chasing £2.5/month Broadband price deals escapes me.
Perhaps we should be like Jersey telecom who are installing full FTTP for all.  Those on ADSL are being told the service will close, here are the new (high) prices for FTTP - and you have two options: pay up or be switched off.



Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pedro492 on December 18, 2014, 12:37:42 AM
Useful article here (http://www.telecomtv.com/articles/policy-and-regulation/new-ofcom-head-faces-a-baptism-of-bt-fire-and-litigation-12044/) about BT and its EE takeover plans, its "Vulcan death grip" on the local loop and the FTTC market, the toothless regulator, and so on. 

It's a refreshing counter-balance to the whooping from the Corporate Media and the City of London we hear every time a merger or acquisition is announced.  So often the media blithely regurgitates those corporate press announcements without so much as a question.   The media conveniently forgetting that the general public, its target readership, almost never gains from any tie-up.  Mergers invariably mean less competition, price hikes, cost-cutting, poorer service and redundancies.

Writing for telecomtv.com, veteran telecoms commentator, Martyn Warwick describes BT's "unassailable dominance" over the local loop and the FTTC market.  Indeedy.

And it seems that The Beast has already got Sharon White, incoming Ofcom chief, in its crosshairs; just two days into her appointment and BT is threatening court action!

Quote
The spat has come about because Ofcom, early in 2015, will announce the imposition of a "margin squeeze" test to ascertain whether BT's rivals (including Sky, TalkTalk and, in due course, Vodafone) who, perforce, must rely on access to BT infrastructure to provide 'superfast' broadband themselves, are able to make a 'reasonable return ' on the sale of those products and services.

That lèse-majesté has angered BT's top management and board of directors but what has really made them hopping mad is Ofcom's further proposal to examine whether or not the wholesale prices BT charges its competitors for super fast broadband are, coincidentally or not, remarkably similar to the retail prices BT charges subscribers for retail superfast broadband services.

Word has it that BT has already threatened to go to the British High Court if the 'margin test' does go ahead. The operator's case is that such a 'test' would be illegal because it would cause irreparable harm to its business. Thus it would apply for a ruling negating Ofcom's intent,  rendering the regulator toothless and impotent in this matter.

TelecomTV also reports funny-goings-on with BT's consumer pricing.   Pre-empting that Ofcom investigation into its "margin squeeze" - when the regulator will measure the true differential between BT's wholesale and retail pricing -  BT has just nudged up its broadband retail prices. (nudge nudge wink wink!)...

Quote
"BT will thus be able to claim, and adduce evidence to support the contention, that it is not applying a 'margin squeeze' on competitors".

Dirty old business.

And there are heightened demands for the de-merger of BT's Openreach division, in the hope that it might level the heavily skewed playing field that is Britain's fixed-wire telecoms sector:

Quote
BT's rivals are most worried that the operator will become even more powerful and dominant in some areas than it is now. They think that their best chance to curb some of the incumbent's commercial aggression will be to demand that the regulator takes a much tougher line with BT Openreach, the division that supplies competitors with wholesale broadband. Demands are rising that Openreach be formally and structurally separated from BT. But that would take time, and BT would fight any such proposal every step of the way

More refreshing comment..

Quote
To this day BT maintains its Vulcan death grip on broadband everywhere in the UK that isn't cabled. - and a lot of it isn't. What's more, despite efforts to open-up the local loop and permit rivals to co-locate their equipment in BT exchanges, the incumbent still has more or less absolute control over something that was built over decades with taxpayers' money and then quite literally gifted by the then government to BT at the time it was privatised.

This is BT's strong suit and despite howls of protest from its competitors and increasingly frequent and strident calls for the telco to be forcibly divested of its local loop assets to ensure some real and meaningful last-mile competition there is no indication that anything will happen on that front until the next blue moon.

The whole thing is a can of worms. In essence, Ofcom wants BT to make greater returns from superfast broadband services to show Ofcom that it is not exercising undue dominance over the market by not charging enough for superfast broadband. It's crackers. The net result of all this may well be that the regulator will get bogged-down in a legal quagmire that will make the case of Jarndyce v Jarndyce in the Charles Dickens novel 'Bleak House' look like instant justice. BT will sit back and watch as the months and years roll by and the cash rolls in.

One thing you can be sure of, is that the prices subscribers pay for broadband will continue to rise and rise, regardless. Ah, competition. It's a wonderful concept. Pity about the practice.

Good article; well worth a read; thanks for penning it telecomtv.com!

http://www.telecomtv.com/articles/policy-and-regulation/new-ofcom-head-faces-a-baptism-of-bt-fire-and-litigation-12044/






Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on December 18, 2014, 07:25:02 AM
To take this all back to reality, is it not just how big business is carried out ?? I think it was c6em (?) who commented how relatively cheap BB services really are ........... especially when you look at other large companies who provide essentials like Gas and Electricity, who you would probably say have a similar kind of stranglehold (Vulcan death grip), over the public ?

In any business arena there is always going to be a top-dog. If BT wasn't it, someone else would be. You seem to have a massive agenda against anything BT, did an old GPO engineer stand on one of your toys back in the day ?? :-\ :)
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pedro492 on December 18, 2014, 11:36:02 PM
 ??? Pleasantries aside, and returning to our matter du jour..

(http://i.imgur.com/0r1fKn1.jpg)
Sharon White: incoming Ofcom chief

The toadying mouthpiece of the City of London, the Financial Times, runs a biography of sorts for Sharon White, incoming Ofcom chief. From the obsequious tone to the FT's copy, White clearly passes muster among the City's slickers. But maybe for all the wrong reasons.

The FT reports on White's previous posts at the World Bank and at the Treasury where she was "one of the favourite mandarins" of Bilderberg grandee (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Bilderberg_participants#United_Kingdom) and former Tory chancellor, Kenneth Clarke.  With notches like that on her career bedpost, she's certainly done her stint of pandering to the wants and whims of High Finance.    Expect no rocking, then, of the corporate apple-cart, once she's installed in her new pad at the Ivory Towers of Ofcom.   BT and its shareholders, both here and abroad, are doubtlessly reassured by a CV like that  :-X

White is one of the very few female heads at this level of government, and she's black too.  Even if she does grow some regulatory balls, she'll face an uphill struggle trying to regulate an industry dominated by misogynistic willy-waving white men.

However, the FT stays loyally by her side here. Pitching White as the Mother Teresa of the telco sector; and blessed too with the diplomatic magnanimity of Mahatma Gandhi....  ::)

Quote
[Her] diplomatic skills..will come in handy when mediating the regular battles between telecoms and media companies. One former official described her style as “like a nurse” who came to tell the patient how best to take the medicine, but brooking no dissent.

Friends say it is important not to underestimate the distance she has had to travel, from a black working-class background, to breach bastions long dominated by middle-class white men.

After graduating from Cambridge, and before entering the civil service fast stream as an economist at the department for education and science, Ms White briefly worked for a church in a deprived part of Birmingham. Both this experience, and her family background, have left their mark.

One senior civil servant, who has seen her meeting members of the public beyond the confines of Whitehall, noted her ability to forge easy connections with people on the receiving end of public services, whom many of her rank would pass their entire lives without encountering.
...
One broadcasting executive said Ms White’s economics background would fit Ofcom’s evidence-led approach. “Although she’s highbrow, she’s also incredibly engaged with popular culture,” the person added. “She’s not one of these people who only goes to the opera.”

And to boot, White is also "incredibly engaged with popular culture".  Oh dear. An aficionado of Trash TV, do they mean? With a remit of regulating our broadcasting industry and its ever-plunging standards?  Perfick for the job, eh?!

In the third of the four FT articles linked below, we find, more seriously, renewed calls for liberating Openreach from the grasping clutches of the pantomime villain, the BT Group...

Quote
The regulator will also face a difficult job deciding to what extent the deal [to buy EE] will make BT too dominant in the telecoms market. The group will have no greater market share in a single sector but the regulator may want to consider the broader context if BT can cross-subsidise various services to the detriment of competitors.

Rivals such as Vodafone and TalkTalk will push heavily for price reductions for access to the group’s fixed line broadband network — and potentially could argue the case for a split of BT’s Openreach infrastructure arm entirely.
..
However, there were concerns about the reaction of Ofcom, the industry regulator, which may view the combination of BT and EE as creating a dominant company across telecoms markets.

Stephane Beyazian at Raymond James expects the transaction will be cleared by antitrust authorities, but there will be more regulatory scrutiny of BT if it does buy EE.

TalkTalk, the group’s fixed-line rival, has argued that Ofcom needs to more strictly regulate and potentially explore the separation of BT’s Openreach arm, which provides wholesale access to the group’s fibre networks.

Rick Mattila, telecoms analyst at MUFG, pointed to the unknown impact of regulatory reaction “and in particular any weakening of the earnings of BT’s Openreach unit”.

Lots of off-the-record comment here, from BT's rivals and their City sock-puppets. Here's one comment echoing what was said earlier in this thread. It's about BT abusing its dominance of the local loop and our state-funded fibre network; and using it to build a low-cost mobile backhaul, to cross-subsidise its new cellular network.

Quote
Vodafone, along with TalkTalk and Three, is also expected to raise concerns that BT could benefit disproportionately from the provision of so-called “mobile backhaul” — the underground cables that carry calls between mobile masts — with its wholly owned mobile business. The carriers are expected to say that they might be at a disadvantage because BT could use its national network to benefit its consumer business.

This takeover-cum-merger could take years to thrash out; certainly with all the regulatory brouhaha, it's going to rumble on for a while yet.   And even if BT does seal the deal, the FT warns that it could find itself struggling to recoup its £12.5bn purchase cost for EE.   Something for BT pension-holders to mull over.

Quote
[Our] parting shot is to point out the communications industry has a history of spending zillions on the fashion of the time from cable to 3G. In years to come shareholders will forget the exact number on EE’s price tag. But they may remember what the acquisition did to their returns.

[1] http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/4edb04be-850c-11e4-ab4e-00144feabdc0.html
[2] http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/0c57e1c2-7cae-11e4-9a86-00144feabdc0.html
[3] http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/220991a6-847d-11e4-bae9-00144feabdc0.html
[4] http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/18859c8c-8465-11e4-8cc5-00144feabdc0.html
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on December 19, 2014, 07:46:06 AM
That's all very good, and you've spent a considerable amount of time compiling these posts, but what is your point ?? It just seems like you're posting up one-sided opinions ...... and that's all it is, opinions. You've condemned Sharon White before she's made her seat warm .... with nothing other than opinion to justify it.
The rest is pure rhetoric as well. Doom and gloom masters.

If I had the time, and more importantly the wherewithal (which I haven't), I could spend all day looking for quotes and character references to parry your theories. If your stories all come true, I will be the very first to say, 'I was wrong you were right ..... where do I send the bottle of wine to ?'. Until all this actually happens though, I for one can't see the point is constant speculation.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pluto on December 19, 2014, 01:15:35 PM
But one thing is plain for all to see – acquisition of EE will put BT in a position of market dominance that cannot be good for anybody other than BT shareholders. For a company to have such market power without legally binding responsibility to its customers (in the sense that the NHS has certain legal and ethical responsibilities) is a hugely unhealthy position; ‘customers’ being not only those of BT Retail but also Openreach.

The answer is to separate Openreach lock, stock & barrel from the rest of the industry and, particularly, to sever all corporate ties between Openreach and the remainder of BT (with the possible exception of the pension scheme).

Furthermore, I cannot believe that the upper echelons of BT towers are not prepared for this. Just how much nous does it take to realise that BT's monopoly of the infrastructure (Openreach), when combined with its current pre-eminent retail market position plus an entire newly-acquired mobile network, is simply too dominant a position?
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on December 19, 2014, 03:46:26 PM
I readily accept all you've said, pluto. What I don't subscribe to are posts alluding that BT are the spawn of the Devil, are akin to the Soviet Russia of old, advocate beating up old ladies in the street, etc etc ....... it's just conspiracy theory/propaganda speak until it does or doesn't happen.

I work for them (Can you tell  ;) ), and yes, they do have issues facing them that any large company would. However this takeover bid pans out, and don't forget it was BT that was approached not the other way round, then it is what it is. I keep reiterating .... it's big business being carried out in a big business arena. Sh1t like this happens from time to time.  :P ;D ;D
It's really not worth people getting all in a tizzy about ....... surely ??
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: broadstairs on December 19, 2014, 08:03:47 PM
I completely agree with Black Sheep, this is business and much of what is being espoused here is not realistic.

I have seen this kind of thing many years ago working for a large multi-national company which was hit hard by US anti-trust legislation.

While it is perfectly reasonable to comment about what the takeover may or may not mean to both BT, its shareholders and customers of EE, and how the regulator may or may not view it, much of what is being said does seem to me to be unreasonable and I think those making some of these comments should carefully consider what they are saying.

BT is NOT the devil incarnate it is a large corporation doing what large corporations do. It is to be hoped that the regulator takes a considered view on what this means for the market place and takes appropriate action if it believes it needs to.

I happen to believe that something does need to be done to protect consumers. However it is not for me to judge.... that is for the regulator.

Stuart
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on December 19, 2014, 08:10:40 PM
OK..  I think we all get the point now that you think BT are the evil empire, but Im not sure if you really have thought things through about what the alternatives could be.

For one, there will always be one dominant company.  It follows that it will be BT purely because until about 10yrs ago they were practically the only company that you could get your telephone from.

Sky is dominant in satellite, Virgin is dominant in cable.  I don't see anyone moaning about their dominance and saying that they must allow access into their markets. 
 

So the fact that Sky and TT together have way more lines than BT is irrelevant?   
Im not sure where you were but LLU wasnt quite a breath of fresh air you seem to make it out to be.  IMHO 2 two best LLU providers have now long gone, both swallowed up by Sky. 

Sky and TT are neither whiter than white.  TT had a history of slamming and Sky has a track record of swallowing and mergers then increasing prices. Once upon a time Sky TV was £6.99 pm whilst Sky ate up all their competitors, then within a few years and there were no other stat providers, Sky's monthly fees had gone up to £16pm and you had to pay extra for sports & movies etc whereas previously it was all in.   The price increases literally did go sky high within just a few short years once all competition had been removed.

Simple questions:-

Why shouldn't BT buy EE?  They were up for sale, they approached BT.  Who ever bought them would end up with the monopoly.
So if sky bought them, then they would have the monopoly for satellite and mobile.  If Virgin bought them, they would had monopoly on cable and mobile.   Someone had to buy them, and who ever it was ends up as major player. 

What are BT supposed to do, sit by and do nothing and let the company dwindle to nothing.   Give all their assets away for peanuts.   They are a company just as any other.  None of the big companies are whiter than white. They all want to make a profit.

Whats the big deal as long as its run as a separate entity.  If you dont like them.. dont use them.
You really seem so tied up with your Beast theory that you dont seem to be able to see that there's 2 sides to the coin.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pedro492 on December 19, 2014, 10:44:20 PM
But one thing is plain for all to see – acquisition of EE will put BT in a position of market dominance that cannot be good for anybody other than BT shareholders. For a company to have such market power without legally binding responsibility to its customers (in the sense that the NHS has certain legal and ethical responsibilities) is a hugely unhealthy position; ‘customers’ being not only those of BT Retail but also Openreach.

The answer is to separate Openreach lock, stock & barrel from the rest of the industry and, particularly, to sever all corporate ties between Openreach and the remainder of BT (with the possible exception of the pension scheme).

Furthermore, I cannot believe that the upper echelons of BT towers are not prepared for this. Just how much nous does it take to realise that BT's monopoly of the infrastructure (Openreach), when combined with its current pre-eminent retail market position plus an entire newly-acquired mobile network, is simply too dominant a position?

Good call, Pluto.  It scarcely needs saying, but there are *lots* of hidden interests on internet forums.  Loads of operatives work them with hidden agendas; there are many forum "perps" on the payroll of corporations or else working for outsourced "third party" PR teams - yet posing as members of the public.

Let's think it through.  What use is an Official Corporate Statement on anything?  Who instinctively believes a Corporation telling us how wonderful it is?  Did anyone believe BT when it said in its (false) advertising that its HomeHubs had the fastest and very best wi-fi in the land?  Nope.

It's much more effective when companies outsource that propaganda to covert "perception management operatives", who pretend to be Joe Public. Working internet forums where they pose as you-and-me, and then insidiously promote the corporation, its products and its services, at arm's length to the company itself.   Those forum operatives can make any phony claims they want, without risk of any censure whatsoever for false advertising from the toothless goons at Ofcom and the Advertising Standards Authority!      Touching a nerve anyone?
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: HPsauce on December 19, 2014, 11:02:49 PM
Touching a nerve anyone?
Nope.  :D

But I do wonder who pays you......   :angel:
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pluto on December 20, 2014, 12:44:19 AM
It scarcely needs saying, but there are *lots* of hidden interests on internet forums.  Loads of operatives work them with hidden agendas; there are many forum "perps" on the payroll of corporations or else working for outsourced "third party" PR teams - yet posing as members of the public.

But I think it needs to be said: I doubt that anyone here is working a secret agenda for The Beast.

Let's not get too paranoid  >:D

But I do happen to believe that the time has come when Openreach needs to be further separated from BT to a sufficient extent that it can see and be seen to be entirely independent of the latter.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pedro492 on December 20, 2014, 03:27:49 AM
Yup, BT Openreach needs to be de-merged from the rest of the BT Group.  That's what plenty of experienced commentators and industry insiders have been saying for a very long while.  But unsurprisingly there are those who have -- in one way or another -- their fingers-in-the-pie at BT, and they disagree, vehemently.

How and when could BT Openreach be spun off?  Well maybe time is of the essence?

BT recently announced that it plans to absorb its Wholesale division into Openreach, Officially for the synergies it might gain.  But maybe there's another reason? Perhaps to ensure it's much more difficult for Ofcom to later demand that - for competition reasons - BT *must* de-merge Openreach.  But with BT Openreach and Wholesale all glued together as one unholy mess, de-merging what was formerly Openreach would be even more difficult.

Not unlike Microsoft deliberately entwining the code for its Internet Explorer browser deep within the Windows kernel itself.  That's the absolute no-no of competent software engineering - which normally strives for low coupling and high cohesion between kernel- and user-space code (or any code, for that matter: keep everything sensibly modularised with clear software interfaces between the modules).

Again, if you're comfortable thinking outside the box here (a.k.a. believing in "conspiracy theories") that embedding of browser code  was done deliberately to stifle regulators. They were demanding that Microsoft stop bundling Internet Explorer with Windows.

Bundling Internet Explorer with Windows, the regulator argued, was inhibiting competition in the browser market by stalling consumer take-up of alternative browsers.  Microsoft's official response to that order to unbundle was: "It can't be done; too difficult. Sorry!"  In fact it could be done, and eventually, after much argument, it was done.

As for how Openreach could be de-merged from British Telecom? Can that be done? Of course. For proof, we should look perhaps at the slightly less disastrous privatisations from the 1980s and 1990s - e.g. the flotations of the former gas and electricity boards which saw their distribution networks, generating plant and supply networks all separated.

[  As an aside, the policy of "selling off the family silver" - privatising our national utilities - was attributed to the governments of Conservative prime minister Margaret Thatcher. In fact she got the blame (or credit) for policies that weren't really her own.  She was little more than a puppet of the Mont Pelerin Society; an oligarchic private club / think-tank for some of the world's most powerful financiers.  It was those financiers who were actually demanding the state sell-offs - with Thatcher's economic adviser and Mont Pelerin Society member Milton Friedman acting as gopher to Downing Street - ultimately arranging the state sell-offs to benefit the Society's uber-rich members.

There was a little bit of window-dressing to disguise the true intent and scale of this privatisation-looting operation. Remember the propaganda about little old Sid buying his own few shares in the gas board? That was to fool the public into thinking that it too could play the market and make a few bob!   Though the tranches of stock actually allocated to the public were generally quite small - just as with the sell-off of Royal Mail this year.  The public was only allocated a small proportion of the new Royal Mail stock; most of it went by prior arrangement to "institutional investors".   The public also has a nasty habit of selling what little allocations they do get, shortly after flotation. So called carpetbagging. Hoping to make a quick but modest buck, to pay for a new holiday or whatever.  Whereas the financiers tend to play it medium to long term; and use all manner of tricks at their disposal. e.g. planting bearish reports in the media to depress the share price of the newly privatised utilities, before buying up more and more stock from the likes of Sid to slowly, over some years, gain overall control.

Recall that the gas board and the electricity boards were split off from their distribution networks, and floated separately.  Very different to the way the water boards and the telephone infrastructure network were hived off as single companies.   Both of the latter have suffered enormously because of that. There is no real competition in either. The consumer is entirely at the mercy of the regulator when it comes to price controls.  In the case of the water boards, the same scam is playing out as we speak in Ireland; where Irish Water is being prepared for privatisation - on the orders and instructions once again of the Mont Pelerin Society, and much to the disgust of the Irish people.  ]

Consequently, many people think that a monopoly, as indeed we've got with BT Openreach and with Thames Water, for example, is best as a state monopoly.  It's really not palatable to have no free market - no real competition - in a privatised industry - not when private financiers are creaming off a huge profit from something that is a necessity of life.  If you can't create competition then nationalise it.    In the telecoms sector, at least at Openreach level, competition has failed miserably. So nationalise it.

That's my view on what should happen to Openreach:  divest the BT Group of Openreach and bring it back under state ownership.  You could argue that's not affordable - the government couldn't afford to re-imburse the shareholders.  That's not quite how government works; it makes the laws; and we follow them.  And it did exactly that when renationalising the train crash known as Railtrack, doing so at minimal expense to the taxpayer.

Comments?
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on December 20, 2014, 05:06:03 AM
Go on then, I'll comment ...........

Good call, Pluto.  It scarcely needs saying, but there are *lots* of hidden interests on internet forums.  Loads of operatives work them with hidden agendas; there are many forum "perps" on the payroll of corporations or else working for outsourced "third party" PR teams - yet posing as members of the public.

I'll stick my neck out and say that you are very similar to the very 'perps' you claim are prevalent. Without any proof at all other than 'A funny feeling' and observations of your writing prose and other 'tells', I'd say that not only are you Pedro ..... but also Asbo kid and now Pluto as well. You're very big on CT's, well there's one for ya.



Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: pluto on December 20, 2014, 12:55:54 PM
Go on then, I'll comment ...........

....and now Pluto as well. You're very big on CT's, well there's one for ya.

CT's ? Que ?

For the record, I deny any alleged connection to any vested interests other than my own. What would be the point anyway? It's hardly as though anything said here is likely to rattle the world of big business of which we are speaking.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: Black Sheep on December 20, 2014, 01:04:01 PM
My apologies, Pluto. I wrongly assumed you might have been Pedro (Alias Asbo kid) having only just joined the forum, and by the way the condo was going.

CT's = Conspiracy Theories. Something Pedro is a great believer in, rightly or wrongly, it's his choice and my choice to defend against. As you also rightly say, what we chat about here isn't going to alter the course of the Universe, or BT's acquisition of EE. A lot of time and effort spent over nothing.
Title: Re: New aqcuisition ??
Post by: kitz on December 20, 2014, 02:07:56 PM
Topic locked

Cross reference to this post
http://forum.kitz.co.uk/index.php?topic=14739.msg276822#msg276822

Member banned not because of anything he said about BT, but because I will not stand by and let one member who has a history of making threats and online harassment continue to disrupt this forum.