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Pacnet to concentrate on Asian SMBs

The newly-formed telecoms service provider will direct most of its capital to serve small and midsize enterprise customers, says Pacnet CEO.
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Written by Victoria Ho, Contributor on

SINGAPORE--Pacnet intends to strongly focus its efforts on the small and midsize business (SMB) space as it reenters the market, the company said Thursday.

Newly formed from an operational merger between Asia Netcom and Pacific Internet, Pacnet is setting its sights on the region's potentially lucrative SMB space.

Company CEO Bill Barney said at a press conference that the large majority of Asian businesses are made up of SMBs, and these companies are more concerned about the cost of network connectivity than large enterprises.

Referring to Asia Netcom's ownership of the East Asia Crossing (EAC) and C2C undersea cable networks, Barney said: "Low cost is key to the Asian market, and who can get closer to lowering the cost than us? We own the glass that holds the water.

"We will put most of our capital into the SMB market. Our [home] consumer base will be deemphasized, though we are not exiting that market anytime soon," he added.

Barney explained that the company's cable infrastructure is more than able to cope with the region's traffic needs, noting that only 12 to 14 percent of its capacity is currently being used.

The former Asia Netcom CEO noted that in spite of that, the company will be upgrading its network over the next two years to allow Ethernet access and fiber optic transmissions between selected points of presence (PoP).

"The region's needs are growing exponentially, and we want to build for the growing data traffic that is used for stuff like high-end Web conferencing," said Barney.

He added that Pacnet, which has its largest employee base in Singapore, is looking to grow its sales force by some 50 to 60 across the region.

Barney also revealed that the company has been "in discussions with different parties" interested in the Singapore government's national broadband network (NBN), and it is keen to submit a tender as an "operational company", rather than a "network company".

"We see the 'network company' as a utility operation as opposed to a service company," said Barney, on intentions to focus Pacnet as a service provider.

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