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Press Release -- July 17th, 2013
Source: Verizon

News Center – Verizon Enterprise Solutions

Connected Solutions Q&A with Mark Bartolomeo

Mark Bartolomeo was recently named Vice President, Connected Solutions for Verizon Enterprise Solutions. Kevin King with the VES corporate communication team caught up with him to ask him about Verizon’s connected solutions strategy, his view of the market and his plans for his new role.

Kevin King: How does Verizon define connected solutions?

Mark Bartolomeo: Connected solutions combine the best of Verizon’s capabilities: wireless devices (phones, tablets, industrial machines, etc.) connected through a world-class wireless network, and managed through a secure, scalable cloud environment. Our customers gain added benefit when we go beyond the delivery of single services and combine these services to deliver a complete solution. Customers that have more devices connected and integrated into their back office systems are able to create useful information that can be shared across the organization about overall system and company performance.

KK: What do you see as the greatest opportunity in connected solutions? What uses or industries offer the most potential?

MB: It sounds cliché to say but there is close to limitless potential for connected solutions. We’re entering a time when nearly everything can be connected to the Internet or to another computer system. Our responsibility is to work closely with our customers and show them how they can move across a continuum of M2M services to improve their business.

Our customers are at various stages of deploying M2M solutions. Some only require basic connected machine services. For example, in the case of many of our energy customers we are providing basic wireless services for meter reading and pipeline monitoring. Other customers require that we deliver M2M solutions as an extension of the existing network services that we provide them today. This is where we start to move into the delivery of connected solutions. In the case of the railroad industry we are providing Positive Train Control services where we are monitoring locomotives and way-side crossings and these mobile end points are an extension of the railroads’ existing core network that we provide.

The third level, and the future of connected solutions, involves providing our customers with solutions that combine our network, security and application hosting and/or cloud services. Today for some of our electric utility service providers we are not just providing the basic wireless transport service to the meters but also hosting the applications, and collecting and storing the energy usage information for the utility. You quickly see how this solution will evolve as the energy companies have us connect to more and more of the devices such as relay switches, capacitor banks, substation monitoring, etc. As a cloud services provider we begin to move from a generic cloud business service to delivering Smart Grid as a Service.

At the highest level some of our customers are now testing solutions that integrate machines with real-time diagnostics and predictive analytics to improve uptime performance. Others are testing the integration of machines into the user’s social network to communicate buying behaviors and preferences. As I mentioned at the start, there really are a variety of ways our customers can use connected solutions and the potential for developing new solutions – including connections, data analysis and storage, etc. – delivers a compelling value proposition when combined with our sales organization’s vertical market expertise.

KK: Why should an enterprise purchase these Verizon’s solutions?

MB: Verizon brings tremendous assets to the market – the nation’s largest 4G LTE network, dynamic cloud services, connected machines, etc. — and our sales professionals have successfully positioned us as an enterprise solutions service provider. Our power in the market and competitive advantage increases exponentially when we bring these services together as a connected solution.

We sell all these services to many of our customers who consume them individually. However, complexity continues to increase for our customers and they are enthusiastic about our ability to help them simplify the deployment. Instead of selling and delivering individual services we are now approaching customers to manage their applications in a secure and scalable cloud and network environment – as a complete, integrated offering. This allows us to deliver a compelling value position to the customer that helps control the cost of deploying new business services and improve service levels by working with a single provider for network, cloud, machine to machine and cyber security services.

KK: Talk about some of the connected solutions Verizon has developed that you think are most compelling.

MB: The most compelling solutions for our customers are ones that help them address regulatory requirements, defer capital expenditures or significantly improve the way they deliver products and services to their customers.

Two that come to mind are the railroad municipal transit industry and electric utilities. We began working with the railroads six years ago to help them meet the requirements for the Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2008. As a direct result of several fatal rail accidents between 2002 and 2008, Congress enacted a bill that required, among other things, that all rail freight carriers enable their systems with improved safety provisions referred to as Positive Train Control. Today we provide these services to Class V freight carriers in the US.

The energy industry is another area where everyone is interested in improving efficiency by balancing the generation and consumption of energy. Today we provide energy companies with visibility across their critical infrastructure for real-time decision making to meet consumer demands for energy. We are also partnering with our Oil and Gas clients to provide pipeline monitoring solutions so they can confirm that they are moving product efficiently across the country while monitoring any impact to the environment.

KK: Where will the industry be this time next year? Where will Verizon be?

MB: Machines are getting smarter and the requirement for humans to be part of the process is becoming unnecessary. As devices become more connected and the sharing of information with other machines becomes more prevalent, they will begin to learn from each other’s history to optimize their own performance.

A year from now you will see more machines that have a social sharing component. Vending machines that promote their use through rewards programs for consumers, health monitoring devices that permit you to compare your results to individuals with similar profiles, traffic infrastructure that shares road conditions and parking availability with your car and municipal transit systems that coordinate routes to move commuters more efficiently.

We will see new competitors entering the market to provide connected solutions services. So as leaders we need to move quickly to launch new services.

KK: What gets you most excited about your new position?

MB: Year to date in 2013 we have added more than 850,000 M2M connections to our network which is a 211 percent year-over-year increase, and we want much more. It’s exciting to see the speed at which our customers are deploying connected solutions and the demands they are putting on all of us to be more innovative. My mission is to identify customer needs in advance of the market so that Verizon leads in the delivery of industry solutions. By using our influence as a leader in global networks and unleashing the talent that we have at Verizon we are positioned to shape the future of the industry.

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