In 2005, convergence is at the heart
of BT’s strategy.
By convergence, we mean the ability
to bring together our capabilities and capacities in new ways to
make life better, simpler and cheaper for our customers. For our
business customers this means productivity improvements; for
consumers it’s about new, easier to use services. For customers
of all kinds it means a more joined-up communications
So, for example, we offer our major
corporate customers around the world a unique marriage of our
networking experience and infrastructure with IT services. These
used to be separate offerings, often supplied by different
companies, but we’re bringing them together in one place. This
means that however much their operations are dispersed around the
globe, our customers can communicate and operate as one, anytime,
anywhere, and at lower cost.
What we’re doing in the mobile
market is similarly about convergence – we aim to offer
customers a converged combination of ‘the best of fixed and the
best of mobile’. Ultimately, our customers shouldn’t have to
worry about fixed or mobile when what they really want is freedom
and flexibility. This means that we have to find ways of helping
them communicate, wherever they are, using whatever device they
choose, at the right price.
And convergence is also what our
twenty-first century network (21CN) programme is all about. What
our customers need to know is that the 21CN can support a range of
technologies and services that will enable them to do the things
they want to do – faster, more seamlessly and more cost
efficiently. And because this new network will support a wide
range of innovative services which are currently run on separate
networks, it will be much more cost efficient for BT.
Global networked IT services
We have raised our global profile
through targeted acquisitions, including Infonet and Radianz, and
by increasing our holding in Albacom to 100%.
We continued to play to our strengths
in the networked IT services market. A few years ago, our position
in this market was aspirational; today, we are competing with the
best – and winning. The BT brand is now a powerful presence in
the global networked IT services market. It’s a brand that
stands for excellent networking skills and a genuine commitment to
finding innovative ways of delivering what our customers want, end
to end, leaving them free to do what they’re good at: running
Our ICT (information and
communications technology) revenues were £3 billion in the year
and the major contracts we’ve won indicate the confidence that
our customers are prepared to put in us. We now have a track
record of meeting the needs of public and private sector customers
in, for example, the financial services and government
Our networked IT services order
intake for the year was over £7 billion.
Broadband has been an enormous
success story, not just for BT but for the UK as a whole, which
now has the highest levels of broadband access of any country in
the G7 group of nations. We hit our five million broadband lines
target a year early.
As broadband access becomes a fact of
life for most people in the UK, our focus is shifting further
towards the retail market where we have fantastic scope to drive
further growth. Having got broadband, people now want to do more
and more with it. We are increasing speeds by up to four times at
no extra cost to our retail customers.
Convergent mobility services
The launch, in partnership with Vodafone, of our
mobile virtual network operator in both the business and consumer
markets is the key to building a mobility customer base and a path
to mobile convergence. We now have over 372,000 contract
Our strategy is to build a foundation for the
delivery of high-value, fixed/mobile convergent solutions, for
consumers and businesses. An early example of this will be Project
Bluephone which will give customers the convenience of a mobile
phone with the quality and cost advantage of fixed-line services.