Putting The Squeeze On Your Customer Service

2017 Was The Year Of Telco Provider Mergers and Acquisitions

Recent large-scale Telco Provider mergers and acquisitions are so numerous and dramatic that 2017 could well be called “The Year of the Greatest Telecom Mergers and Acquisitions in History.” This activity represents a level of transformation not seen since the 1980s. In fact, if your provider was involved in one of these mergers and you are not concerned about your telecom services, perhaps you should be. History has shown us that the merger of large telecom companies does not usually work out well for their customers.

So How Will These Mergers Likely Impact You?

Every merger and each acquisition brings greater rewards and more control for the larger-than-ever companies. At the same time, the businesses using their services sees their Customer Service deteriorate, as the mega-carriers struggle to align their infrastructure, resources and processes so they can enjoy economies of scale, reduce operating expenses and redundancy, expand their direct sales initiatives, increase their stock price and squeeze the number of staff providing Customer Service.

If you think your business won’t be affected, guess again. Take a look back at some of the most significant acquisition events as you assess their possible impact on your business’s telco services:

Deals Done

  • February 2017: Verizon finalizes acquisition of XO Communications, gaining XO’s fiber-based Ethernet and IP network assets.
  • February 2017: Windstream merges with EarthLink for an expanded national fiber footprint.
  • March 2017: Zayo Group Holdings, Inc. acquired Electric Lightwave (formerly Integra Telecom), adding their long-haul fiber route miles and dense metro fiber in many Western markets.
  • September 2017: Mitel completes acquisition of ShoreTel, for greater access to cloud communications solutions.
  • September 2017: Spectrum is the marketed brand name for Charter Communications which acquired both Bright House Networks and Time Warner Cable in 2016.
  • September — October 2017: In September, GTT Communications, Inc. completes its acquisition of Global Capacity, adding their client base in application service provider, healthcare, retail and carrier markets. Then, in October , GTT announces its acquisition of Transbeam, to expand its client base and network footprint throughout the Northeast Corridor.
  • November 2017: Century Link and Level 3 complete their merger, expanding worldwide route miles and connecting additional fiber lit buildings.
  • November 2017: Crown Castle International Corp. concludes its acquisition of LTS Group Holdings LLC (“Lightower”), adding route miles of fiber in major Northeastern metro markets.
  • January 2018: Star2Star Star2Star Communications and Blueface merge to become Global Top Five Unified Communications As A Service (UCaaS) provider.

Deals Not Done (Yet)

  • November 2017 — a merger that didn’t happen: Sprint & T-Mobile called it off.
  • December 2017 — the Department of Justice is mounting a possible lawsuit to block the proposed merger of AT&T with Time Warner.

Steps You Can Take To Ensure You Continue To Receive The Quality Support You Need For Your Telco Services

  1. Be aware
    – Know what has changed in relation to your business’s providers, so you will be better equipped to build your defenses and make a telco provider change if necessary.
  2. Leverage an independent advisor or broker to order your new telco services
    – Regardless of the size of your business, telco provider’s guarantee the best pricing to these “channel” agents.
    – Channel agents offer their clients telco and cloud solution options from a wide range of providers and a broad line of products and services.
    – Channel agents use their technical, engineering and design expertise to identify solutions which best fit your specific needs.
    – Channel agents leverage their telco marketplace knowledge to negotiate the best and most competitive pricing for you without you having to lift a finger or pay them a penny.
    – Channel agents provide invaluable expertise and oversight during the provisioning of your new services.
    – Regardless of the size of your business, telco provider’s give priority or higher tier customer support to Channel agents’ businesses customers.
    – Channel agents can keep an eye on your spend, manage and renegotiate your contracts and proactively notify you when a better solution for your needs becomes available.

USA Voice and Data is Chicago’s leading Telecom, Data Center, Cloud and Security advisor and broker.  We provide our business customers a One-Stop-Shopping ecosystem and White Glove Service for all their service needs throughout the United States and globally.

Contact USA Voice and Data at info@usavoicedata.com or 312-604-3070 if you are concerned about how your current telco services might be impacted by a provider merger.

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