Feeds

BT to announce death of Concert

About time. But will it take time?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

BT is to announce it will finally scrap its loss-making joint venture with AT&T, Concert, according to numerous reports. Concert has been a thorn in the side of BT for years and current estimates are that the company - which supplies long-distance telephony to business customers - is losing £20 million a week.

The announcement doesn't come as much as a shock since new chairman Sir Christopher Bland stated a fortnight ago that sorting Concert out was his main priority. The BT board has said this before but Bland's fast-acting no-nonsense approach may mean that something is finally done about it.

It will be a difficult challenge, however, since BT and AT&T will have to decide who gets which customers - which is bound to start arguments. But when £20 million is lost for every five days they deliberate, there is a fair amount of impetus in getting an agreement sorted.

No one seems to be sure why Concert has been such a grand failure, with the most obvious reasons - heavy competition and poor management - repeatedly rolled out with little or no evidence to back them up. To our mind, the most likely reason is that the two grand former monopolies have had heavy ego and culture clashes, promoting argument over action.

If Bland manages to pull it off - and fast - he may finally have earned the title of Saviour of BT. Since starting the job, he has cut the behemoth's huge £30 billion debt in half by selling off minority stakes, real estate and announcing a £5.9 billion rights issue. He has also cut out ambiguity in BT's previous business strategy and tied up loose ends, removing some of the City's jitters.

Sorting out the Concert debacle will be a final feather in his cap. Of course from there he only has to come up with a viable plan for the future of BT's dwindling monopoly in the UK. Something that has eluded Bonfield, Vallance and Brace for five years - although they only knew it 12 months ago. ®

Related Stories

So what's the future of Future BT?
Why BT is unbelievably Net stupid
OFT rules on BT's Yellow Pages business
BT shake-up to save business (touch wood)
BT unveils first-ever loss
What's in BT's bargain bin?
'I'm not a quitter and I love my critics' - BT's Bonfield

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
DOUBLE BONK: Testy fanbois catch Apple Pay picking pockets
Users wail as tapcash transactions are duplicated
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.