Ekrem Koeylueer is Vice President of Wholesale at UPC, a Liberty Global Company

 

When Ciena invited me to talk at this year’s Ciena EMEA Partner Summit, I was very pleased, but not totally surprised. We’ve really broken new ground together this year in terms of delivering Carrier Ethernet connectivity globally, and the event seemed a great opportunity to talk about it.

So what made us get started in the first place?

Like all good projects, it came about through listening to our customers. With lack of standardisation across different Ethernet services, management and configuration can be expensive and inefficient. It’s also complicated. The largest carriers are telling us that managing connectivity around the world is getting harder. Some carriers are working with 100 or more partners to connect their customers’ international business sites. This means an overload of suppliers and contracts to deal with, which increases complexity and admin costs.

The solution: standardised, global Carrier Ethernet connectivity

UPC wholesale and Liberty Global are one of the biggest providers of cable services globally, with 28 million broadband customers and 25 million cable customers. We’re also a major player when it comes to enterprise services, with fibre connections between more than 250,000 business sites.

"Ciena was also able to help us achieve MEF 2.0 certification, giving customers peace of mind that all our Carrier Ethernet services are standardised, harmonised and standards-compliant around the world."

- Ekrem Koeylueer, Vice President of Wholesale at UPC, a Liberty Global Company

This means we’re an infrastructure-rich organisation with dense fibre networks across Europe and Latin America. So, we thought, why not try to solve our customers’ business problem by delivering a totally standardised Carrier Ethernet service around the world with a single supplier (Liberty Group), and a single contract as well.

Connecting the world with Ciena

As well as providing best-of-breed technology to support the project, Ciena was also able to help us achieve MEF 2.0 certification, giving customers peace of mind that all our Carrier Ethernet services are standardised, harmonised and standards-compliant around the world. Ciena also worked with our sales teams to help us convert these new services into commercial opportunities.

Today, we are offering Carrier Ethernet services across Central and Eastern Europe, and we are adding Belgium, Ireland and the UK shortly. For phase 3 of the project, the global service will be extended further, to Chile, Puerto Rico and other key markets in Latin America.

Great outcomes for us and our customers

This global Carrier Ethernet project is great news for UPC and Liberty Group. We can now offer harmonised Ethernet services to tier-1 operators wherever they are doing business. It gives us major competitive advantage in a world where carriers need to simplify their supplier relationships and where service standardisation is paramount.

"We can now offer harmonised Ethernet services to tier-1 operators wherever they are doing business. It gives us major competitive advantage in a world where carriers need to simplify their supplier relationships and where service standardisation is paramount."

- Ekrem Koeylueer, Vice President of Wholesale at UPC, a Liberty Global Company

For customers, these global Carrier Ethernet services are also delivering major benefits. They can connect their world with one Managed Services Agreement (MSA), and they get one clearly defined Service Level Agreement (SLA) wherever they’re operating. There’s also one point of contact for their business connectivity, and great price transparency for them.

I think this is a great example of how we, as partners, can work with Ciena to develop the business models of the future. We’re now looking forward to building on our existing relationship with Ciena and other partners in the ecosystem to explore new opportunities and develop the next-generation of carrier services.

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