BT has a significant presence in Wales and is proud to be recognised as one of Wales’s Anchor companies by the Welsh Government. It is thriving in a sector which is seeing significant growth both in Wales, the UK and across the world.
The communications industry is one of continual change and BT is barely recognisable as the company it was several years ago. From being primarily a UK lines and calls business we have become the enabler of ground breaking technologies through our investment in fibre both for the corporate market and SMEs and consumers. Our own investment in innovation goes from strength to strength. Our services offer communications possibilities that no one had even thought of back in 1996 when I joined BT let alone that we would be offering those services to customers in 170 countries.
The telecommunications world is changing rapidly and business, government and the people of Wales need to be aware of new developments and the potential they hold for increasing our prosperity and improving our quality of life.
We in BT Cymru/Wales are able to celebrate a number of notable successes over the last couple of years.
It was a joyful occasion on 18 July 2012 when the First Minister, Carwyn Jones AM, announced that BT would be the Welsh Government’s partner to deliver next generation broadband to 96% of Wales by 2016. That programme is now well underway and on track.
BT Sport is going well and Wales is benefiting from its sponsorship of the four regional rugby sides and in the BT Supporters Club investment in community sport in Blaenau Gwent.
Swansea was chosen as a trial site for the new G.fast technology, designed to help BT deliver ultrafast speeds of up to 500Mbps. The Swansea trial focuses on how G.fast can be used to serve Multiple Dwelling Units (blocks of flats) and business premises, both of which present unique challenges that differ from ordinary residential deployments.
EE have a strong presence in Wales with their call centre based at Merthyr Tydfil. EE have committed to bringing all customer service calls back to the UK by the end of 2016. This will create 600 jobs in the UK and Ireland. The operation in Wales will continue to expand and our contact centre in Merthyr Tydfil will see a large number of new roles as a result.
Alwen Williams, BT Director Wales