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Less British, more telecoms please

BT sets out world-domination plans

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Last time I wrote a piece about British Telecom I was contacted by a reader who complained that the company had been operating as BT for some time and that I was revealing my lack of industry knowledge through the use of the obsolete moniker.

At the time I responded that British Telecoms plc still exists and "...encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group" according to BT's press releases, but agreed that to most people the name of the company is BT.

Being British isn’t always an advantage in today’s world markets, and BTs aspirations to play in that market are starkly set out in their Global Vision, published today.

The US, Japan, India and China are top on the list of markets BT is looking to further exploit; intending to double revenues from each by 2010. But while general telecoms growth in India and China mean a bigger pie for everyone, in the US and Japan they are going to have to take on some very embedded competition.

But the vision isn’t just about gaining customers; equally important is raising the profile of the brand, as explained by Andy Green, chief executive of BT Global Services:

"We have very ambitious plans and BT's brand is fast becoming as familiar to businessmen in New York, Tokyo, Mumbai and Shanghai as it is in Europe."

Note that it's "BT's brand" which is spreading around the world, not British Telecom’s. Right now the footer of a press release is just about the only place you’ll see the name British Telecom, but as the company grows up and leaves the nest it's unlikely to even appear there much longer.®

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