Wholesaler and Retailer How NEXERA is setting new standards of inter-operator cooperation30-12-2021
Nexera is dealing with developing and managing the fibre-optic infrastructure in the areas of blank spots of four Polish Regions. Being a wholesale-only operator means it cannot provide retail services, and thus the success of its partners to whom it provides a broadband network translates to the Nexera’s success. One of the company's priorities is the application of equal principles of inter-operator cooperation, i.e. providing operators with the same conditions of using the network, regardless of the scope of their operation. After 4 years of operation, Nexera is recognized as a pioneer of good practices in the field of cooperation with telecoms. What is behind this success? Paweł Biarda of Nexera explains.
Nexera has so far signed contracts with over 60 retail operators, including both large nationwide telecoms and smaller local companies. Some operators are still preparing to start their operations on the Nexera network, while 35 retailers already do. In mid-2021, the Nexera network covered approx. 150 thousand households in over 1,300 localities in 4 Polish Regions – Świętokrzyski; Kujawy, Pomorze and Mazowsze; Warmia and Mazury; and in the Łódzki Region.
How does Nexera help operators succeed?
• Partnership and equality The fundamental principles of Nexera's model of cooperation with retail operators are based on partnership and equal terms. This applies to both access to information, the principles of operational cooperation and commercial conditions. For example, in order to maintain equal trading terms and conditions and to follow the expectations of the Market Regulator, Nexera does not apply volume discounts.
- We are offering exactly the same terms and conditions of cooperation to all operators, regardless of the range of their operation and the size. We strive to ensure that our offer and methods of operation meet the needs our retail partners, but sometimes using our network demands from the retailer some adjustments in the offer, connection of the network in the indicated place or acceptation the same prices for everyone. This business model allows us to operate according to transparent and non-discriminatory rules, and several years of experience in cooperation with operators have shown that the course of action we have chosen works organisationally and commercially. Nexera does not offer retail services, therefore the success of each operator is also our success - explains Paweł Biarda, Member of the Management Board for Sales and Business Development at Nexera.
• Flexibility Nexera offers operators identical pricing terms, but with a flexible choice of service options. The wholesale offer is developed to match the largest possible number of options on the retail market. For the BSA service, operators currently have 8 bitrate profiles (from 300 to 1000 Mbps), several configuration and service variants, and two price variants, depending on the place of service provision to choose from.
• Automation The innovative model of the company's operation is based on fully automated processes implemented in IT systems that operate in the computing cloud. Communication with operators is also performed in the same way. This enables communication with Nexery's IT systems from anywhere in Poland and access to the full product portfolio. Nexera is probably the only telecommunications company in Poland that has a fully cloud-based implementation of 4 key system areas: BSS, OSS, ERP and BackOffice, which allows the company to provide services and manage network infrastructure without its own data centre.
- We create solutions that change the telecommunications market and become a benchmark also for other operators. One of our innovations is an open API system. The solution was developed in accordance with the recommendations of the Regulators. It is also adapted to the specifics of the local market. This is the first implementation of this type in Poland, for which we were granted an award in the international competition Global Carrier Awards in 2020 - adds Paweł Biarda.
• Comprehensive, multi-stage support Before commencing commercial operations on the Nexera network, each retailer undergoes onboarding, i.e. the process of launching interconnection. It involves the determination of all operational and technical issues necessary for the efficient use of network coverage data, the transmission of orders, and the commissioning and maintenance of services. Technical aspects include configuration of a wholesale service or testing of retailer's devices. System and process aspects include communication testing, or order fulfilment. Before starting sales and launching services at subscribers, the operator is connected to one, several or all 14 points of contact with the Nexery network. Onboarding, in addition to technical and operational aspects, means also a commercial implementation that plays an important role in understanding the realities of the retailer's operations on the wholesaler network.
- During meetings with operators, we also prepare retailers in terms of commercial activities, so that they can find themselves in the market, which is governed by slightly different rules than the traditional telecommunications market. Cooperation with a wholesaler means new opportunities, great competitiveness and new challenges. Sometimes it requires to take a different look at your business and sales processes, as well as remodelling your marketing strategy. We are trying to make it as easy as possible to enter this market for retailers - says Paweł Biarda.
Nexera changing the rules of the game By building fiber-optic infrastructure in areas where it has not been possible so far, Nexera is changing the telecommunications market in Poland and the way existing players operate. Both larger and smaller operators have the opportunity to expand their business and increase sales. Local service providers can go beyond the current area of operation and reach new clients.
- Many operators have an established position on the market and a business concept that has been proven for years. However, our model changes the way the things work. Small operators can compete with big players, and the largest telecoms have to reckon with the smallest, local companies that offer services on the same infrastructure, the use of which costs everyone the same. This definitely levels the playing field. The long-term strategies that worked previously were in many cases based on the advantage of the availability of the operator's network. Today, these strategies may no longer be enough to keep or increase sales. The key is to find a new distinguishing feature and business idea. Our experience shows that an operator who understands the rules governing the new market and adapts to them efficiently, e.g. by preparing dedicated offers, definitely increases the chance of success - adds Paweł Biarda.
Benefits for residents Cooperation with the wholesale operator means many changes also for the end recipients of Internet services. Residents within the range of the Nexera network gain access to the offers of many retail service providers (up to 10 operators) on one optical fibre. They can also easily change their supplier, which only requires changing the contract and the retailer's device, without having to reconnect to the network.
- This is a unique benefit on a national scale. Residents of the largest agglomerations in Poland do not have such a wide selection of services and operators. We often say "Nexera - One for ever", because from a technical point of view, a subscriber connection is built only once, and the change of operator in the future consists only in the replacement of retailers' CPE devices - explains Paweł Biarda.
5 years of dynamic growth In 2022, Nexera will celebrate its 5th anniversary. During this time, we have managed to develop new standards of cooperation with retailers that transform the telecommunications market and improve the quality of services provided. This year, Nexera has received funding from a consortium of banks in the amount of over PLN 1 billion for the development of fibre optic networks, which underlines the credibility of the company's investment plans and good prospects for the development of the wholesale market in Poland.
- In terms of the size of the team, we are a relatively small company. We employ a little over 30 people, which may contrast with the size of the network and the scale of operations. However, we can boast of an innovative organizational culture based on the "agile" model and the concept of outsourcing, which in many respects has become a benchmark for other operators. The prospects for cooperation with us are enormous and we can see that more and more operators see it as well. We can expect that in the near future the telecommunications market, not only in the Nexera Regions, but also in other areas of Poland, will develop in a wholesale model, which will bring benefits to operators and residents - summarizes Paweł Biarda from Nexera.
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