Adel Bazerghi, senior vice president, marketing and wholesale at Bell Canada and president of BCE Nexxia, a Bell Canada company
Give an outline of BCE coverage in Canada, elsewhere in North America, and worldwide. What are the key attractions of that as a wholesale player?
As Canada’s largest communications company, Bell Canada has the most expansive coast-to-coast-to-coast network, connecting the largest number of enterprise locations across the country.
Our North American fibre-optic network with route and point of presence (PoP) redundancy ensures secure and reliable connectivity services to our customers. Our availability on our core network is 99.999%, with no single point of failure and multiple diversity options.
We have various “meet me” points in the US, located in Seattle, Chicago, New York, Minneapolis and Ashburn, Virginia. They serve as convenient, cost-effective gateways into Canada and provide cross connection into each location. Soon, we will launch a PoP in London, England, making it easier for European-based customers to connect into North America and through to the Pacific and beyond without going into the US.
Our goal is to provide a one-stop shop to our customers for all of their connectivity, hosting and professional services and network equipment needs.
This is an important value add for our customers as they can quickly expand their network reach into and across Canada and North America with minimal upfront capital expenditures while relying on the reliability of the Bell Canada network and the expertise of a highly skilled 24/7 help desk support team.
In the US and internationally, we supply services to our customers through BCE Nexxia, our US-based subsidiary.
How important are data centres in your offering – including data centres within the group and data centres that are within BCE’s coverage region?
Data centres, and the cloud and hosting services they deliver, represent a very significant pillar in Bell Canada’s offerings to our customers. We are the country’s number one provider of data hosting solutions; together, Bell and Q9 Networks operate 27 data centres nationwide.
Bell has been a significant investor in Q9 Networks since 2012 and has worked closely with Q9 to meet the fast-growing demand for secure data hosting and cloud computing services.
On 8 August 2016, Bell Canada announced that it will acquire all the equity it does not already own in Q9 Networks, a Toronto-based provider of outsourced data centre services. Bringing the Q9 team into Bell means we can stay at the forefront of innovation in the sector, fully leveraging the complementary services and expertise of both teams.
How are you increasing the capacity of your networks and your other facilities in order to provide for demands by carrier and enterprise customers?
We continue to invest in our broadband and wireless networks and services. We are in the second year of our plan to invest $20 billion in Canada’s broadband future by the end of 2020, expanding the reach and speed of our best-in-class network and connecting more homes and businesses directly with broadband fibre.
Earlier this year, Bell Canada announced its plan to acquire Manitoba Telecom Services, a transaction valued at approximately $3.9 billion. A component of our plan is to invest $1 billion over five years to accelerate broadband communications services across Manitoba, this latest infrastructure project focussed on Northern Manitoba.
In 2015, we also rolled out Canada’s biggest fibre infrastructure build valued at $1.14 billion. This initiative will bring fibre to every business, home and building in Toronto – the fourth largest city in North America – further expanding our fibre services in Ontario, Québec and Atlantic Canada, and more to come.
We continue to grow our markets and expand our services to ensure we deliver world class services in Canada to the domestic market and international service providers.
We’re very excited about our new London PoP and the new opportunities this will provide us, especially our wholesale business. The London PoP will offer the ability for international service providers to connect directly into Canada. This will mean we can offer European service providers diverse routes into and across North America without going into the US.