Instrumental role of wholesale industry in navigating the crisis
21 July, 2020: UAE based Telecom Review, the leading global telecoms news platform, organized a virtual panel discussion on ‘Capacity and data traffic: Enabling a seamless experience’. SES, represented by Elias Zaccack EVP Sales, was the only satellite operator on this prestigious panel which also had CEO’s from PCCW Global, Orange International Carriers and MTN GlobalConnect. Senior leaders from Etisalat, Tata Communications and GBI were also part of the panel. The discussion generated a lot of interest and over 346 participants from around the world joined the event. SES was awarded the satellite operator of the year award for the Middle East by Telecom Review readers in December 2019.
The participants at the virtual panel discussed the management of the sheer amount of data which is generated throughout the COVID-19 pandemic; the role of the cloud in ensuring a seamless remote experience and the challenges that COVID-19 posed to the wholesale industry. In the era of lockdowns when network upgrades and repairs cannot happen Satellite as an alternate means got a lot of attention. Similarly the role of satellites as a cloud enabler was highlighted.
Elias Zaccack, EVP of Global Sales at SES, said, "Without dismissing the severity of COVID-19, we are seeing a lot of opportunities. One of those opportunities is digitization. A lot of countries are moving a lot faster to digitization. What we have realized is just how essential satellites are to the global infrastructure."
Elias also spoke about the increase in demand for satellite services directly to the home and in rural areas.
“We look at the pandemic as causing a shift in where the demand is. If you think of pre-COVID, there was a heavy demand in urban areas. Now with people working from home, there’s a shift to rural areas.”
He went on to explain that rural areas are far more dependent on satellite connectivity than urban areas, so SES had to provide more connectivity services in the less connected areas around the world. COVID-19 affected the company in different ways, but similar to other panelists, data services are in great demand.
“Our fixed data business is actually doing well in terms of demand and in terms of our ability to support them,” he said.