[AusNOG] NBN Legislation
curtis at bayne.com.au
Mon Nov 29 12:26:54 EST 2010
We've already begun divesting our carriage-related assets and ceased regional roll out in August, straight after the election. From what I've read, we're not the only provider to be doing so - the advice my fellow management types are receiving from their advisers and boards are the same as what we're getting: get out now.
Banks refuse to give any money given the regulatory uncertainty. Any other investment capital is only accessible at ridiculous interest because of the increased risk. The NBN has rewarded the tyre-kicking, bottom-feeding resellers who have contributed NOTHING to infrastructure in this country and punished those who have risked significant amounts of capital to further telco endeavors.
For anyone considering investing in their own infrastructure in Australia, I have one piece of advice for you:
From: ausnog-bounces at lists.ausnog.net on behalf of John Edwards
Sent: Mon 11/29/2010 12:09 PM
Cc: ausnog at ausnog.net
Subject: Re: [AusNOG] NBN Legislation
On 29/11/2010, at 9:45 AM, vak wrote:
> Many people have claimed the stifling of innovation as a reason why we
> should not have the NBN.
> I would argue the exact opposite. The NBN will stimulate new ideas and
> products. Those who generate new ideas today will be the winners in the
> next decade - its an opportunity we must not sqander.
History shows that on the ASX at least, the successful carriers in Australia are those that have deployed their own infrastructure. This is generally considered to be "innovating" by press releases, as it allows these carriers to change the market they're in, and more importantly have a significant competitive and technical advantage over resellers.
With the NBN, this opportunity is no more. We're back to the dialup days where the difference between services was marginal because everyone connected over the same basic infrastructure.
I'm not sure that this is a bad thing in most cases, but there are plenty of opportunities for history to repeat itself. Some group of investors may decide that it's a great idea to buy market share by selling an unlimited product below cost (they will also be heralded as "innovative"), which is going to upset the industry as customers flock to the better deal or expect their provider to match it. This will happen right up until they inevitably go bust - complete with a chorus of I-told-you-so's by pundits and debts to wholesalers including the NBN. The new problem for industry with that scenario is that this time around the government is involved and will need to be seen to be "doing something".
There's also the regional areas - it seems that this part of the legislation penalises anyone who would dare to compete with the wireless or satellite parts of the NBN by providing a city-equivalent service.
I am not opposed to the NBN, but I am opposed to uncertainty that results in people not getting broadband. Legislation that basically prevents anyone from legally deploying an interim solution better have a really good reason attached to it.
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