Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Ovum telecoms chief to leave

It’s all change at the top of Ovum’s telecoms team.

Earlier this week, Chris Lewis, senior vice president (SVP) of telecoms research, announced that he was leaving the company.

He joins a number of other senior analysts who have moved on recently or will be leaving shortly.

Martin Garner, head of wireless and mobile research, is setting up his own firm but will continue to work for Ovum on a freelance basis.

Mike Cansfield, head of fixed telecoms research, is joining Forrester Research.

Other departures from the telecoms team include Marta Muñoz Méndez-Villamil, Annelise Berendt, John Delaney and Jonathan Arbor.

In an email exchange last week (about an earlier draft of this post), Rosemary Masterson, Ovum’s operations director, was able to provide some thoughts from Mark Meek, the new Datamonitor CEO and managing director of Ovum.

“Ovum provides a high quality syndicated offering which is based on highly collaborative teams, not just individuals. We are continuing to recruit for people in both research and consulting who want to be part of a dynamic commercially focused team.”

The company has decided to promote internally to replace Chris, Martin and Mike.

Brett Azuma is replacing Chris as SVP. He will also maintain his current role as head of the carrier networks & technology practice.

Based in the US, Brett doesn’t have a very high profile in Europe. However, he has over 20 years industry experience and was previously chief analyst for telecommunications at Gartner.

Reporting to Brett will be four practice heads:

Jeremy Green takes over mobile strategy while Jan Dawson picks up fixed telecom strategy.

Richard Mahony and Michael Philpott continue to run the enterprise and consumer teams respectively.

Ovum is also hiring externally. Jonathan Doran is joining the consumer team. He’s currently a senior analyst at Yankee Group where he covers broadband access and service strategies for the consumer market. There are more “senior” hires in the pipeline.

As you’d expect, Mark is bullish about Ovum’s future prospects: “Last week, I set out my vision for a business whose commercial success will be driven by its people and the best-in-class content they produce for its clients. This message applies not just across Ovum but the entire Datamonitor Group.

“Post Datamonitor's acquisition of the Ovum business, there were many challenges as to be expected with the integration of two public organisations. The major elements of these have now been addressed, including putting the underlying financials of the business on track and Ovum profits and sales growth are currently tracking at historic highs.

“Moving forwards I will be focusing the attention of the management team on people retention and morale. We've had some staff turnover but there are many good people still here who want to see the Ovum business succeed.

“Datamonitor continues to invest in Ovum, rolling out its interactive content delivery platform, the Knowledge Center, which is now live with our clients, and are resolute in maintaining the respect the Ovum brand commands in the marketplace.”

Given the volume of change in such a short space of time, Ovum’s great reputation in the world of telecoms research has undoubtedly taken a hit. Many of the departing analysts are held in high regard in the market.

However, there remains a lot of good will towards Ovum and there are many who hope these changes are just a short-term blip.

It’ll be interesting to see how Brett and his team now respond. There are plenty of folk out there watching to see what happens next.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Have you entered the "Analyst of the Year" awards yet?

The Institute for Industry Analyst Relations (IIAR) is currently running the inaugural "Analyst of the Year" awards.

As an AR professional, this is your chance to choose both an 'analyst of the year' and an 'analyst firm of the year'.

There's more information - and details on how to enter - on our blog.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Top mobile analyst leaves Ovum for IDC

John Delaney, a top mobile analyst at Ovum, has resigned and will be joining IDC at the end of April.

It's a real coup for IDC. John is highly regarded and enjoys a great reputation in the mobile market.

With John heading up IDC's work in the consumer mobility market, it allows enterprise mobility guru Lars Vestergaard to focus all his energies on that market.

After all the changes in the past year or so, IDC now seems firmly set on re-asserting its position as a market leader in the mobile sector. John is joining, Jonathan Arber is already on board and we expect more appointments to be announced in the next few months. A device specialist is high on the priority list.

It also begs the question: what's happening at Ovum? Two of its consumer mobile people have now jumped ship to IDC while other telecoms analysts have moved to join vendors and operators. We hear that there's more people heading for the door.

It'll be interesting to hear what Chris Lewis, SVP for telecoms research, has to say at the IIAR meeting on Thursday this week (3 April 2008). If you'd like to come along, please get in touch with Hannah Kirkman.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Gartner has a "queue manager" for vendor briefings requests

I just spotted that Gartner has a "queue manger" in the North America and EMEA vendor briefings team.

It made me chuckle.