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Neil Berkett confirmed as CEO of Virgin Media
Friday 07 March 2008 12:28:43 by Andrew Ferguson

With the confirmation of Neil Berkett as CEO of Virgin Media after some eight months as the interim CEO we may see Virgin Media starting to crank up a gear.

Virgin Media has had a rocky time since its creation and the largest shareholder Richard Branson, while very present at the launch, appears to be taking a back seat in the way the business is moving forward. This may work in Neil Berkett's favour since he started the 'focus on broadband' rather than trying to take on all comers, as he has more freedom to push the business down the path he believes is right. has some interesting comments from an analyst at the Charles Stanley Group.

"Virgin Media is really struggling. They face tremendous competition not only from Sky but in broadband from other competitors."

Sam Hart, analyst at Charles Stanley Group

Interestingly the issue of cable broadband being delivered over fibre optic cables raises itself again, one begins to wonder if there are people who do think Virgin Media is a fibre to the home architecture. At best it is a fibre to the cabinet architecture, with the last 1000 feet or so delivered over metallic co-ax cable. With the right levels of investment in upgrading the network and providing sufficient peak capacity, Virgin Media does have the ability to consistently outperform any ADSL2+ provider at present. The big question is whether this can be done at a price point that is attractive to the consumer.

Challenges over the next couple of years are likely to be sub-loop unbundling which could see ADSL2+ on much shorter twisted pair lengths, and if VDSL2 starts to appear the speed crown will be at serious risk. Look forward another year or two and fledgling full fibre networks may be emerging too. Staying ahead of BT and its retail or wholesale products used to be enough but with the varied competition out there others like Telefonica (Be/02) need to watched closely.


Posted by chrysalis over 9 years ago
fttc is still a big improvement over dsl local loops.
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
"Branson .. present at the launch .. taking a back seat"

Regular Branson practice; RB gets the publicity, others do the work.

"sub-loop unbundling .. ADSL2+ .. shorter lengths .. VDSL2"

The cablecos have fibre to the street corner cabs. Their phone lines go there too, and are short. An ideal starting point for VDSL2+ IF there was a financially attractive market and competent supplier.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 9 years ago
Neil BERKett confirmed as CEO of VIRGIN MEDIA.

CAPS = Appropriate.

Posted by AdamGz0r over 9 years ago
c_j_: Theyre is no point taking this approach, with DOCSIS 3.0 Virgin could bond multiple channels 1 after the other and gain upto or over a gbit of speed with distance not being an issue, unfortunately Virgin don't have the frequency capacity but if they took an analogue channel offline it would free up the space required for another bonding channel or even 3 highdef channels for theyre almost non existant hdtv service.

Theyre are still over 20 analogue channels running for some unknown reason :)
Posted by chrysalis over 9 years ago
the reason is likely some areas are incapable of digital broadcast as they havent been upgraded in favour of buying companies such as virgin mobile in the past.
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
Adam, I'm afraid I don't quite follow your logic: "Virgin don't need DSL because they can do DOCSIS 3" and "they haven't got enough bandwidth on the cable". Cable is fundamentally shared copper media from cable box to punter, DSL is fundamentally per-person media from box to punter, some fun to be had there for anyone with time, inclination, and funds.
Posted by Dixinormous over 9 years ago
QUOTE: Interestingly the issue of cable broadband being delivered over fibre optic cables raises itself again, one begins to wonder if there are people who do think Virgin Media is a fibre to the home architecture.


Well yes, they would do as the ASA have said that Virgin can advertise their service as such.

There is fundamentally more bandwidth in the cable network as fibre is deeper and the coax has higher capacity than twisted pair, however price is still the determining factor in most people's minds.
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