NTL resignation fuels Telewest merger rumours

NTL resignation fuels Telewest merger rumours

Summary: The cable and broadband provider is on the lookout for a new chief information officer after the departure of Phil Pavitt

TOPICS: Networking
NTL chief information officer Phil Pavitt has announced he will be leaving the cable company next year, a move bound to fuel rumours that a long-expected merger with fellow UK cable company Telewest is close.

Pavitt has been leading IT at NTL for about two and a half years and won't immediately be moving to another company, though he said he will ultimately be looking for another CIO position, probably within a telecoms, media or utilities company.

In a market squeezed on one side by BT and on another by BSkyB, as well as the Freeview digital TV platform, NTL has been criticised for poor customer service at times. This was one effect of cable industry consolidation in the 1990s that saw NTL acquire a number of other providers and try to marry various systems and call centres.

However, Pavitt has led projects to put right some of the problems, most notably a single-view back-end and front-end customer service IT setup called Harmony, mainly based on .Net and SQL Server technology from Microsoft.

Pavitt told ZDNet UK sister site silicon.com today: "We have taken IT in NTL from something that was very unconsolidated, inefficient and expensive to something that is above average in all those areas. Our trajectory now is for the best IT in terms of total cost of ownership and what we will physically deliver."

He added that he will leave "good legacies" and that his decision to leave is based on his "own personal values" -- and feeling rather burnt out after lots of hard work.

NTL will now appoint an interim CIO and while Pavitt says there is a list of candidates internally for the CIO post, no decision has been made.

Speculation will now turn to the CIO at Telewest, the other main UK cable company whose business complements NTL's, who could head up a combined IT function.

Topic: Networking

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  • I've been working for NTL for the last 2 years and have worked for Telewest before that for much longer,In regards to NTL were my job is customer facing i've never in my whole career seen such an unorganised shambles.The CIO says that he has worked hard at putting in harmony to streamline customer service only at the expense of every other deptment and the customer.Our customer service and general service that the customer gets at home has to be said is embarrassing and my fellow collegues who came from the well oiled and organised Telewest all feel that we as a company have let down so many customers and are still demotivated to the point that we would rather leave that continue to give our customers the sub standard service other providers in all products are giving with ease.
  • NTL have one of the poorest reputations going. To read talk of a merger with Telewest gives me the shivers. Especially when a colleague has been telling me stories of how poor NTL are.

    I'm a happy Telewest customer - happy with the products and the service I get - but the idea that they're going to merge with NTL concerns me greatly. If service and product standards slip from the level they are now to the NTL level [capped, unreliable and unacceptable] then I, along with several other previously happy customers, must consider alternatives.

    The thought of giving any money to BT - even line rental - sickens me, but if that is what I must do then that is what I must do.

    Please take care of your customers Telewest!