We spoke to Optiva’s new CEO John Giere, who took over the role in December last year, to discuss the ways the telecoms industry is changing and why adaptability and cloudification will be at the heart of 5G success

In the past few years, telcos’ shift to the cloud has been increasingly steadily, but is it moving fast enough?

For Optiva CEO John Giere, there is still a long way to go for the telecoms industry, with operators taking the process step by step.

“Typically no more than 15% of them have done greater than 25% of their workloads to move to the cloud, so there’s a lot of room to improve,” said John Giere, CEO of Optiva. “When I see what the spend looks like on the BSS side, it looks to me like its going to be gradual and iterative, in accordance with a multi-step migration to a public or private cloud.”

But that does not mean there is no incentive to move fast. Cloudification can result in a huge reduction of costs related to maintenance and support services, especially where legacy equipment is involved, leading Giere to dub the transition a “TCO imperative”. 

You can watch our full interview with John Giere from the link above.


But for Giere, the real strength of the cloud goes beyond the traditional understanding of improved time to market for various services. Instead, Giere says we should think mor in terms of time to benefit. 

“How do you get the benefits from your product? Does it really produce use cases out of the box? Does it really shorten your time? Does it really create a revenue dynamic for you more in line with what the online players have today? That’s a big metric for us,” he explained.

This is especially true for 5G, where the technology’s relative infancy means that flexibility in BSS will be everything for operators.

“To be successful in 5G, you’ve got to adhere to those principles so that when an operator does start to select where they can play, where the use case is, they can be adaptable, flexible and successful in a short period of time,” said Giere.

“This is the new way of working. Tell us what you want and how you want it,” he explained, arguing that a focus on a software was key to achieving this flexibility. “We’re now a software business, not a services business. That’s a complete transformation. For a decade I was the CEO for a software company and that proved to be the gamechanger in the data plane and I think, quite frankly, it can be the game changer in this one too.”


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