Michel Combes, CEO of Alcatel-Lucent, spoke recently of the "industrial logic" underpinning the group's regeneration under The Shift Plan, its framework for new strategic success globally
"This is about industrial choices," Combes said, observing that he is driven to ensure that Alcatel-Lucent will transform from a telecom equipment generalist to an IP networking and ultra-broadband specialist between now and 2015.
"We will put most of our resources into innovation, recruiting the best talents from around the world," he added.
New incubation hubs and new intellectual properties may be expected to figure strongly under Combes' aegis. This transformation will be based, moreover, on differentiated management and collaborative innovation, to optimise operations with respect to advanced technologies and to bring forward those legacy operations the group remains involved in.
Research and development at the group gains a new focus under The Shift Plan, with a reprioritised cost structure set to deliver sustainable research outcomes – and, particularly, that entails a rejuvenation of Bell Labs, which is already acknowledged for dynamism in the development of technologies that can support tomorrow's networks.
"Our industry is fast and growing," said Combes, who noted the present transition towards cloud-based data storage and increased adoption of intelligent communications devices and services across the globe.
Issues to be addressed include bandwidth, latency, security and reliability across full-IP network platforms, handling increasing quantities of data across growing service and application ecosystems.
This may, immediately, bring a stronger focus on North American, European and Asian markets – but the rest of the world, including African enterprise connectivity, is not far from such considerations.
The Shift Plan may be expected, over three years, to bring Alcatel-Lucent to a state of readiness for addressing the African and Arabic data explosion following that which is taking place already in more maturely networked environments around the world.
Cloud-IP networking, furthermore, will entail new, business models addressing new network design considerations, and increased convergence between telco and non-telco operations.
That is a complex proposition, designed to address the consequences deployment of disruptive technologies in key growth territories, and that is why Alcatel-Lucent is motivated to move now - to attain, retain and maintain leadership in transformed and transforming markets, through the prioritisation of specialist over generalist appeals to market.