‘Last year, we gen­er­ated € 50 mn from cloud. This year in terms of per­cent­age, cloud is much more sig­nif­i­cant than nor­mal busi­ness’

Voice&Data - - INTERVIEW - —Vivek Badri­nath CEO, Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices Pravin Prashant

Vivek Badri­nath, CEO, Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices was re­cently in In­dia to meet cus­tomers, brief global me­dia about emerg­ing mar­ket op­por­tu­ni­ties, and to get an up­date on the In­dian MSC (ma­jor ser­vice cen­ter).

Vivek was for­merly the ex­ec­u­tive VP for net­works, car­ri­ers, plat­forms, and in­fra­struc­ture and was re­spon­si­ble for de­vel­op­ing the tech­ni­cal poli­cies for France Tele­com and sup­port­ing the im­ple­men­ta­tion of its in­te­grated prod­uct port­fo­lio. Prior to Orange, he spent 4 years with Thom­son In­dia where he was in charge of both man­u­fac­tur­ing and sales and man­ag­ing re­la­tion­ship with key cus­tomers.

Speak­ing to VOICE&DATA, Vivek talked about Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices strat­egy, emerg­ing mar­ket op­por­tu­nity, eco­nomic slow­down, cloud strat­egy, and com­pe­ti­tion. Ex­cerpts—

Where do we see In­dia in the emerg­ing mar­ket op­por­tu­nity for Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices as the com­pany plans to achieve €1 bn rev­enue from the emerg­ing mar­ket by 2015?

The ac­cel­er­a­tion of emerg­ing mar­ket started in 2010 for Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices and it is cu­mu­la­tive for both net­work and ser­vices. Our fo­cus in Asia Pa­cific is on China, In­dia, and ASEAN re­gion. In Latin Amer­ica, our main fo­cus is on Brazil where we see lo­cal com­pa­nies pro­vid­ing us sales busi­ness. In­dia as a desti­na­tion is in the top 3 emerg­ing mar­kets for Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices as In­dia and China have max­i­mum growth vis-a-vis Asia Pa­cific.

We bought GTL 3 years ago and we have got around 600 peo­ple in 8 lo­ca­tions. We are closer to the tar­get in In­dia.

With eco­nomic uncer­tainty in­creas­ing, do you see a slow­down in en­ter­prise ICT spend­ing both in In­dia as well as the world­wide mar­ket?

The enterprise­s are not cut­ting on ICT spend­ing as they did in 2007-08 and there are many strong trends—con­sumer­iza­tion of mo­bil­ity, re­tail busi­ness fo­cus­ing on mo­bile ap­pli­ca­tions, and pub­lic trans­porta­tion fo­cus­ing on mo­bile ap­pli­ca­tions. If enterprise­s lower their spend­ing, they will be in trou­ble and the com­pa­nies can­not af­ford to de­crease their ICT spend­ing. In Septem­ber-oc­to­ber time­frame, there was a short­en­ing of cy­cle for very large scale IT trans­for­ma­tion projects but long-term projects are un­der re­view by boards.

Orange’s MSC in In­dia has the high­est num­ber of em­ploy­ees in terms of emerg­ing economies. Where does it stand vis-avis de­vel­oped economies and do you plan to add ca­pac­ity as we move for­ward?

We set up this in­fra­struc­ture in In­dia and are sat­is­fied with the skill sets that we have reached. In fu­ture, the man­age­ment of cloud in­fra­struc­ture will be run from Gur­gaon. Gur­gaon MSC will grow as cloud busi­ness grows for Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices.

You have strong re­la­tion­ships with NTT and China Tele­com in APAC. Are you look­ing for a sim­i­lar part­ner­ship with the In­dian op­er­a­tors?

We work with the In­dian op­er­a­tors for last mile and back­bone shar­ing. Both China

The enterprise­s are not cut­ting on ICT spend­ing as they did in 200708 and there are many strong trends— con­sumer­iza­tion of mo­bil­ity, re­tail busi­ness fo­cus­ing on mo­bile ap­pli­ca­tions, and pub­lic trans­porta­tion fo­cus­ing on mo­bile ap­pli­ca­tions

Tele­com and NTT re­la­tion­ships are for last mile and they have sig­nif­i­cant part of en­ter­prise mar­ket. To­day, we don’t see any strong exclusive re­la­tion­ship in the In­dian mar­ket and none of the op­er­a­tors have shown strong re­la­tion­ships.

The com­pany plans to gen­er­ate €500 mn from cloud by 2015. How have you fared and how are things pro­gress­ing?

Last year, we gen­er­ated €50 mn from cloud. This year in terms of per­cent­age, cloud is much more sig­nif­i­cant than nor­mal busi­ness. Cloud pro­vides flex­i­ble com­put­ing and presently the health ver­ti­cal is utiliz­ing it a lot. We are en­rich­ing the range to cover other ver­ti­cals. We are also de­vel­op­ing whole suite for small com­pa­nies in the France re­gion.

For more re­lated ar­ti­cles go to voicen­data.com

What is Big Data strat­egy for Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices?

We are ac­cel­er­at­ing on stor­age ca­pa­bil­i­ties. We need to de­velop Big Data fea­tures which are touch­ing more as a trend. Big Data is more for­ward look­ing with re­spect to net­work re­quire­ment and stor­age re­quire­ment. Presently, we do not have prod­ucts in place as it would be com­ing in 3-4 years’ time.

How is Orange ser­vices dif­fer­ent from large in­ter­na­tional con­nec­tiv­ity ser­vice providers?

Our MSC is meshed with high con­sis­tency of process as there is same method­ol­ogy across the world. Re­silience is of the high­est or­der and there is no dis­rup­tion to the cus­tomer model. We also have the largest reach which is rel­e­vant to some enterprise­s as we have the deep­est reach. In terms of tech­nol­ogy, VPN Gallery can link our net­work with ex­ter­nal ser­vice providers us­ing a se­cure gate­way. We also of­fer in­ter­op­er­abil­ity with re­spect to open video pres­ence as we al­low in­ter­con­nec­tion of the video plat­forms of Poly­com, Tand­berg, and Cisco.

In terms of rev­enue, where do you stand vis-a-vis large in­ter­na­tional con­nec­tiv­ity ser­vice providers world­wide?

We are about at the same level as AT&T and Ver­i­zon are on the in­ter­na­tional en­ter­prise mar­ket. We are strong in France, Poland, and Rus­sia. To a lesser ex­tent, we are suc­cess­ful in Spain, Bel­gium, and Ro­ma­nia as we have a strong pres­ence.

Do we see Orange Busi­ness Ser­vices fo­cus­ing on smart cities, e-health, and e-govern­ment in In­dia?

I think we have a good so­lu­tion in green­field projects. In this do­main, part­ner­ship is the key as we bring only one model. We will be part­ner­ing with these play­ers for smart cities and e-health. We know that we will have to work with lo­cal part­ner­ship. For Bhutan emer­gency re­sponse, we work with lo­cal med­i­cal au­thor­ity and Bhutan govern­ment where we pro­vide tech­nol­ogy that con­nects di­rectly to get an am­bu­lance quickly.

prav­inp@cy­ber­me­dia.co.in

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