Q&A with Ivan Mihaljevic, president of BCE Nexxia
Big Interview

Q&A with Ivan Mihaljevic, president of BCE Nexxia

We are focused on our network evolution toward virtualisation, says Ivan Mihaljevic, president of BCE Nexxia, a Bell Canada company, and Head of Bell Wholesale

Can you give us a brief overview of your organisation?

Bell Canada – Canada’s largest communications company – has been in continuous operations for more than 130 years. We lead in broadband network investment and provide world class communications services to our customers. Annually, we invest more than $4 billion to deliver on our commitment to excellence.

Our fully redundant fibre network is the most extensive in the country – spanning from the Atlantic to the Pacific and into Canada’s northern regions – and offers industry-leading service level agreements, including 99.999% uptime guarantee.

Bell Canada provides service to approximately 73% of Canadian homes and businesses and our network carries more than 80% of the country’s traffic. We are also proud that 96 of the top 100 companies in Canada trust our network for their mission critical communications.

As a wholesale provider, we offer end-to-end communications solutions, including connectivity, data center and professional services as well as IP voice and network equipment. Our expanded data centre services are located across Canada from St. John’s to Vancouver and can host mega projects throughout the country, offering both diversity and geo redundancy. In addition to connecting our data centres our network also connects more than 100 data centres to cater to our customers’ unique business requirements.

Headquartered in the U.S., BCE Nexxia is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bell Canada that offers communications services to internationally-based customers through our meet me points in key U.S. cities such as New York and Seattle, and soon through a new point of presence in London, England. Our customers include resellers, service providers, over-the-top players and system integrators.

What have been some highlights and developments so far in 2017?

This year, we are looking forward to the launch of our point of presence (PoP) in London, England. We have invested considerable funds to establish a new meet me point offering bi-directional connectivity between Europe and Canada – without the need to transit through the United States. 

Our London PoP offers both network and geo diversity as well as super corridors connecting London to key Canadian cities such as Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver, and into U.S. city hubs such as New York, Chicago, Seattle and Ashburn.

The London PoP will offer seamless connection into Canada’s most extensive network spanning coast-to-coast-to-coast. What’s more, our London PoP will provide a powerful option for service providers pursuing emerging opportunities resulting from the Canada-EU free trade agreement.

We are also pleased to announce the expansion of our Ethernet service with the launch of an alternative access point using microwave technology.

Our Ethernet over microwave will enable Bell to provide Ethernet services into remote regions of Canada, meeting the needs of customers wherever they operate in Canada.

And earlier in the year, we received 2.0 certification by the Metro Ethernet Forum. Achieving MEF CE 2.0 was a long-time goal of Bell and represents our commitment to offer industry-leading carrier Ethernet services that meet the highest industry standards. 

We have also invested in our Wavelength service to offer higher levels of resiliency and survivability. 

Our service already provides the speed and capacity required for today’s low latency, data intensive applications, but now we’ve gone a step further by introducing mesh restoration. 

While traditional optical networks typically offer some type of path redundancy and a failover time of less than 50 milliseconds, they cannot survive multiple or simultaneous failures.

In a mesh-based network managed by an intelligent control plane, connections are quickly rerouted in the event of network failures, minimising the risk of disruptions.

Bell also continues to invest in its IP broadband and SIP services. This year, we expanded our feature sets IP VPN service and expanded the coverage area for our SIP Trunking services.

How do your customers work with you?

We view customers as partners. We work hard to earn the trust of international and domestic service providers looking for end to-end networking solutions to connect into and across Canada.

Our salespeople and engineers spend a great deal of time collaborating with customers to ensure we understand their business in order to offer the best solutions to meet their market requirements. 

What are your strategic priorities for the coming year and what announcements can we expect from Bell?

As a company, Bell Canada is committed to lead in capital investment in infrastructure, R&D and new services. 

We continue to invest in our connectivity services such as Ethernet, IPVPN and Wavelength as well as further expand our SIP services. 

We are also focused on our network evolution toward virtualisation. This evolution is part of our strategy to transform our network to deliver services in a software-defined environment, decoupled from the underlying technology.

About Ivan Mihaljevic

President of BCE Nexxia, a Bell Canada company, and Head of Bell Canada, Wholesale

Combining 20 years of technology and telecommunications experience, Ivan is recognised for his deep business knowledge and financial acumen. Focused on driving growth for wholesale and retail telecommunications services in Canada, the U.S., and internationally, Ivan is always seeking new market opportunities and strengthening relationships with clients and partners.

Since joining Bell Canada in 2007, Ivan has held progressively more senior leadership roles helping to drive B2B market leadership across wholesale, large, midmarket and small business segments. In addition to his role as President of BCE Nexxia, Ivan also serves as the Head of Bell Canada’s Wholesale division and business unit Chief Financial Officer of Bell Business Markets. Ivan began his career at KPMG and then moved to IBM, where he progressed quickly through senior roles within Finance, Operations, Pricing and Strategy.

Ivan graduated from Queen’s University earning a Bachelor of Commerce degree, with Honours. 

As a passion, Ivan is committed to education and support of those most vulnerable. He is actively involved in his community supporting non-profit organisations whose mission is to serve the poor and marginalised.

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