International Capacity Panel to Examine Opportunities for CLECs

While the overall market for international bandwidth appears to be improving, challenges remain depending on the markets being served. How can U.S.-based service providers successfully operate internationally, either directly or through partnerships? Thats just one of the questions panelists will explore during Its A Small World: Trends in International Services.

The event will be moderated by Guillaume Boyer, publisher of Capacity magazine in the U.K., who noted traditional CLECs can enjoy increased revenue opportunities if they are able to sell international services. To do this they need to partner with an international carrier (or VNO) in the same way that they would partner with a domestic carrier in order to provide services outside of the CLECs respective footprint.

The slated participants Eric Gillenwater, director of service providers for Telstra; Andres Jordan, vice president of carrier solutions for Deutsche Telekom; Anthony Rossabi, director of VSNL International; and Allen Timpany, CEO of Vanco PLC will discuss their views on the matter of international capacity as well.

For his part, Boyer explained that CLECs, especially those that are small and serve specific ethnic markets, can provide international dialup services to customers by buying international switched minutes and/or entering into bilateral agreements with other carriers. However, on the data/IP side, many larger carriers (e.g. RBOCs and IXCs) will have retail and enterprise customers with sophisticated requirements, and in order to service their (customers) international connectivity requirements, will need to enter into partnerships with global and regional (international) carriers, he said. This is particularly important when you consider end customers QoS expectations at the application level, for example.

Meanwhile, carriers such as Cogent Communications, Level 3 Communications Inc. and Global Crossing are making their mark on the international side by acquiring metro providers and networks in Europe, Boyer pointed out. These companies clearly have an international strategy from the perspective of acquiring new markets outside of the U.S., he said. AT&T wholesale is another example of a U.S.-based company with a strong international strategy with local presence in every region. Also, by acquiring MCI, Verizon has been able to position itself as a global player.

The opportunities are growing then, especially as more European and Asian carriers look to terminate traffic in the United States, said Boyer. This is a major opportunity for U.S.-based carriers to partner with these carriers and terminate their traffic, which also increases revenue, he said. Boyer said the panel likely will include a discussion on how to choose an international partner, as well as an overview of the different types of available partnerships, such as outsourcing, acquisition and single, rather than multiple, partners.

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