published weekly by Angus TeleManagement Group
Number 490: July 29, 2005
Publication of Telecom Update is made possible by generous
financial support from:
** ALLSTREAM: www.allstream.com
** AVAYA: www.avaya.ca/en/
** BELL CANADA: www.bell.ca
** CISCO SYSTEMS CANADA: www.cisco.com/ca/
** ERICSSON: www.ericsson.ca
** MITEL NETWORKS: www.mitel.com/
** SPRINT CANADA: www.sprint.ca
** UTC CANADA: www.canada.utc.org/
IN THIS ISSUE:
Telcos Ask Cabinet to Deregulate VoIP
Telus Workers on the Picket Line
Entourage Strike Ends
Local Phone Competition Spreads
Telecom Policy Review to Include Public Hearings
Bell Mobility Relaunches Solo
Telus Strike Boosts Wireless Sales
Mitec, SR Telecom CEOs Resign
Thieves Hit Phone Equipment Vendors
Wireless Fuels Rogers Growth
Aliant Sales Edge Up
Allstream Swells MTS Revenue
Aastra Revenue Doubles
Hall of Fame to Debut at Telemanagement Live
TELCOS ASK CABINET TO DEREGULATE VOIP: On July 28, Aliant, Bell
Canada, SaskTel, Telebec, and Telus filed a joint petition to Cabinet
asking it to eliminate the "economic regulation" of VoIP services that
the CRTC ordered in Telecom Decision 2005-28 (see Telecom Update
#481). The telcos want to be able to offer VoIP services without
filing tariffs and without restrictions on "winback" activities or
** The Canadian Cable Telecommunications Association immediately urged
Cabinet to reject the telcos' appeal.
TELUS WORKERS ON THE PICKET LINE: The Telecommunications Workers Union
calls it a lockout. Telus calls it a strike. What's certain is that
after five years without a contract, thousands of unionized Telus
employees are now walking picket lines. B.C. and Alberta courts have
barred the TWU from picketing in a manner that "blocks, obstructs, or
impedes access" to and from Telus premises.
** Telus blocked all of its Internet customers from accessing
Voices-for-change.com, a website that is "run by and for
Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU) members." The B.C.
Civil Liberties association condemned Telus for
"leveraging its power as a telecommunications service
provider to censor a specific group." Telus ended the
website block after an Alberta Court ordered the website
to remove photos of Telus employees who cross picket
ENTOURAGE STRIKE ENDS: The four-month strike by 1,400 employees of
Entourage Technology Solutions, now part of Bell Canada, has
ended. The union says the settlement is $3.5 million better for its
members than Bell's pre-strike offer.
** CRTC statistics show that service-related complaints
against Bell more than doubled during the strike.
LOCAL PHONE COMPETITION SPREADS: Local phone service from cablecos
Shaw, Rogers, and Cogeco is now available in more areas. Shaw has
begun selling Digital Phone in Winnipeg; Rogers has added six
communities in Ontario and three in B.C.
** Vonage Canada has begun offering local telephone numbers
from Brampton and Mississauga, Ontario.
TELECOM POLICY REVIEW TO INCLUDE PUBLIC HEARINGS: The
Telecommunications Policy Review Panel (see Telecom Update #482, 485)
has announced two public consultations. The first, on September 9 in
Whitehorse, will focus on broadband access issues. The second, on
October 24-26 in Ottawa, will consider broader telecom policy issues
including regulation, adoption of information and communications
technologies, and productivity.
BELL MOBILITY RELAUNCHES SOLO: Bell Mobility's Solo Mobile service,
featuring free text messaging, $1-a-day walkie- talkie service,
exclusive handsets, and a free ringtone each month, will be available
August 2. The revived Solo brand targets 13- to 24-year-olds.
TELUS STRIKE BOOSTS WIRELESS SALES: MetroBridge Networks, a B.C.-based
wireless broadband provider, says its volume of customer inquires has
increased 15-fold since Telus workers walked out. The company says it
is receiving orders from companies that are moving or setting up new
offices, and from others that want back-up facilities in case of
MITEC, SR TELECOM CEOs RESIGN: The chief executives of two Montreal-
based wireless equipment makers have resigned:
** Rajiv Pancholy has resigned as President and CEO of Mitec
Telecom. CFO Keith Findlay becomes interim CEO; Stefano
Bazzocchi is acting CFO. Mitec has announced losses of $25
million on sales of $58 million for the year ended April
** Pierre St-Arnaud has resigned as President and CEO of SR
Telecom. William Aziz, the company's Chief Restructuring
Officer, has been named interim CEO.
THIEVES HIT PHONE EQUIPMENT VENDORS: Toronto fraud squad investigators
say thieves have been calling in orders for quantities of business
phones, picking up the equipment, and paying with worthless cheques or
money orders. Seven incidents have been reported; other victims are
asked to call the police.
WIRELESS FUELS ROGERS GROWTH: A 47% jump in wireless revenue enabled
Rogers Communications to increase second-quarter sales to $1.73
billion, 29% more than a year earlier. The wireless division, which
added 125,000 subscribers, made up 56% of Rogers sales. Results
include the former Microcell but not Call-Net.
** Rogers bundle discounts, formerly 15% across-the-board,
now range from 5% to 15%.
** Rogers Telecom (formerly Call-Net) reports Q2 2005
revenues of $217 million, up 8% over the same quarter in
2004, with growth in both consumer and business service
revenues and a 41% increase in EBITDA.
** Rogers' July 1 acquisition of Call-Net (see Telecom Update
#488) triggered several change-of-control provisions,
including vesting of stock options ($4.1 million) and
senior executive payments ($3.4 million). The agreement
that allowed Call-Net to use Sprint's name and technology
will end September 29.
ALIANT SALES EDGE UP: Aliant Inc. had 2Q net income of $49.8 million,
24% higher than the second quarter a year earlier, during which Aliant
experienced a strike. Sales rose 1.2% to $517 million. Wireless sales
increased 14%; Internet sales, 6%.
** Aliant says that 693 employees have accepted buyout
ALLSTREAM SWELLS MTS REVENUE: Manitoba Telecom 2Q revenue of $502
million was 60% higher than a year ago, before its purchase of
Allstream. On a pro forma basis, revenue in Manitoba was up 4.3%,
while that of the national division (Allstream) was down 3.9%. Net
income: $111.5 million.
** John MacDonald, President of the MTS national division,
returns from a medical leave August 2.
AASTRA REVENUE DOUBLES: Aastra Technologies, based in Concord,
Ontario, had 2Q revenue of $126 million, 94% higher than a year
earlier. Net income: $7 million. Earlier this year, Aastra bought the
PBX business of EADS, which includes the former Intecom; two weeks ago
it paid $51 million for the PBX business of Berlin-based DeTeWe.
HALL OF FAME TO DEBUT AT TELEMANAGEMENT LIVE: The inaugural ceremonies
for Canada's Telecommunications Hall of Fame will be held in Toronto
on October 17, in conjunction with the Telemanagement Live conference
and trade show. The first eight inductees to the Hall of Fame will be
announced at a gala co-hosted by the Coalition for Competitive
** Online registration for Telemanagement Live, Canada's
premier annual conference on business telecom and
networking, is now open at www.telemanagementlive.com.
Participants who register before August 31 save $300 off
the full conference fee.
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