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Buy over build, says Capacity Europe keynote panel

Capacity Europe day 1 panel.jpg

It was during the first keynote session entitled building a brand and capitalising on extended capabilities that Alexandre Pebereau, CEO of Tofane Global and Gina Nomellini CMO of GTT shared the same thoughts on strategy saying buying and integrating key assets is far better than building it.

Moderated by Tim Passingham, chairman, Cambridge Management Consulting Nomellini and Pebereau were joined by Jonathan Dann, a senior telecommunications & communications infrastructure analyst; Phil Mottram, chief customer officer, Zayo Group; and Thor Johnsen, director at Aggelia Limited.

When discussions started, Passingham asked the group all of the consolidation that has taken place in the industry, which is their favourite, or standout choice.

Nomellini started off and interestingly didn’t mention GTT’’s own acquisitions but instead cited the recent ATT and Time Warner announcement saying that it indicated ‘a change in service” and the market strategy as a whole.

As the conversation moved towards financial opportunities in the data centre space Johnsen said, “Talking to institutional investors there is an increasing look at the digital infrastructure and the drive for new infrastructure investment. More so infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) business model is burgeoning.”

“The lesson from the evolving towers and data centres is the customers want diversity and neutral and many large telcos don’t want to provide that.”

“What’s interesting is that a couple of years ago it was only financial service customers from my experience were interested in latency, that has now changed and everyone’s interested in that now.”

The subsea space according the panel remains an area of the market that specialised and hard to penetrate.

Johnsen kicked things off saying that it’s “more of the same” and “content continues to dominate that space.”

“The new builds that are coming in are massive in capacity, largely OTT driven for their own use rather than resell to others. They are building for capacity and cost per unit rather than for latency,” added Nomeillini.

Pebereau echoed this saying that “OTT’s have changed the market as they build with strategy and capacity in mind rather than cost.”

Dann, who was directly involved with Telxius’ subsea cable projects a few years ago he says that very few understand the subsea business model as it is a very specialised market.

What are the strategic priorities for the five moving forward? Mottram said its infrastructure and finance - no changes to his roadmap. Dann says independent infrastructure is his priority, while Pebereau will focus on the execution of Tofane’s acquisitions and finding new sellers. GTT’s Nomellini says that advanced growth is on the cards and Johnsen has his eyes on investment in IaaS.

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