Feeds

Marconi savaged after failure to win BT 21CN deal

Share price falls 40 per cent

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

Shares in telecoms equipment outfit Marconi plummeted more than 40 per cent this morning after it confirmed it had not secured a slice of a major £10bn contract from BT.

In a statement to the Stock Exchange Marconi announced it "has not been selected as preferred supplier for BT's next-generation 21st Century Network (21CN) project".

"This is a disappointing outcome from a very competitive tender process," said Marconi chief exec Mike Parton. "Our products performed extremely well technically, but we have been unable to meet BT's commercial requirements."

The failure to win a slice of the action sent shockwaves through the City. By El Reg's midmorning coffee break, shares in Marconi were down 207.5p (43 per cent) at 274.5p.

Putting a brave face on things Marconi added that it would continue to supply equipment and services to BT under existing contracts it has with the UK's dominant fixed line telco.

Earlier today BT named eight companies - whittled down from more than 300 across the globe - as its preferred suppliers for its 21CN project. The telco is investing £10bn over the next five years in the new network designed to deliver whizzy high-speed communications services.

The eight companies are Fujitsu, Huawei, Alcatel, Cisco, Siemens, Lucent, Ciena and Ericsson.

Said BT WHolesale boss Paul Reynolds: "21CN is a key infrastructure that will fuel the UK economy and provide a flexible way for consumers to use new services. The selection of the preferred suppliers is an incredibly important building block towards that vision. 21CN will also radically reduce BT's cost base, with identified savings of around one billion pounds a year."

Last year BT announced plans to migrate its national phone network to an Internet Protocol (IP) platform. The move will take five years to complete and should produce savings of £1bn a year for the UK's dominant fixed line telco.

The new multi-service IP-based network will carry both voice and data services and replace the UK's public switched telephone network (PSTN). 21CN will involve installing IP kit, called Multi Service Access Nodes (MSANs), in exchanges which are capable of carrying both voice and data traffic. The mass migration of customers onto the new network is set to begin in 2006 with the majority shunted across by 2008.®

Shares in BT were up 1p (0.5 per cent) at 198p at the time of writing. ®

Related stories

BT's 21CN is 'exciting, radical and now'
BT to trial fibre-to-the-home
BT to save £1bn a year with IP network

Best practices for enterprise data

More from The Register

next story
Amazon says Hachette should lower ebook prices, pay authors more
Oh yeah ... and a 30% cut for Amazon to seal the deal
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Nintend-OH NO! Sorry, Mario – your profits are in another castle
Red-hatted mascot, red-colored logo, red-stained finance books
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
Feel free to BONK on the TUBE, says Transport for London
Plus: Almost NOBODY uses pay-by-bonk on buses - Visa
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
prev story

Whitepapers

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?