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Digital Disruption The IBM Way


Big Community had the privilege of a quick interview with Steven Deskovic, Director Asia Pacific – Telecommunications for IBM ahead of CommunicAsia2017. Currently based in Sydney, Steven leads IBM’s Telecom Industry Sales spanning across AN/Z, ASEAN, Korean and India.

Steven Deskovic joined IBM in 2006 and has more than twenty years of International experience in the IT and Telecommunications industry. He has held various Global positions in the Telecommunications Industry with companies such as Hewlett –Packard, where he was responsible for the Sales and Marketing IT&T solutions, Vallent as a the Sales Director for Southern Europe for Service Quality Management Solutions and Ericsson where he was responsible for OSS / BSS solutions across EMEA bases in Stockholm, Sweden.

We asked him his views on the age of digital disruption and its effect in and around the industry.

What has been the most significant digital disruption that has affected your industry and how were industry players coping at the time?

We have had a digital disruption in the telecommunications industry. Digital Service Providers (DSP’s) like WhatsApp, Facebook, etc. have provided OTT services that have taken a green field approach to provide services on a low or no cost basis without having the burden of complexity and cost structure associated with a legacy physical network. The likes of these DSP’s and online retailers like Amazon have reset the customer expectation on experience and cost in a way that definitely sends shockwaves to Communication Service Providers (CSP’s).

In response, CSP’s are reacting by creating their own portfolio of these types of services and focussing a lot more time and money on their Customer Experience. We see the industry investing in Digital Reinvention to transform their people, skills, processes, and systems to match these new models and thin cost structures.

Today the digital disruption is something we not only expect, but look forward to as it opens up new and innovating possibilities. How do you see this trend evolving and panning out?

The pace of transformation will surely continue to accelerate. I see our clients moving to create new sources of revenue by partnering to integrate the power of their network assets and client relationships with the services of upstart technology providers.

We see the CSP’s jumping onto the wave of IoT as the logical partner to bring connectivity to sensors for all types of solutions. This is just one example of CSP’s finding ways to be platform providers and partners as a means of new revenue opportunities.

What is your opinion on the adoption scale that has been occurring in the space within the region?

Australia, Japan, Singapore and South Korea are leading the way in the region thanks to their enterprise grade networks, latest services and demanding subscribers. The banking, financial services, and insurance verticals lead the pack, followed by media. By comparison to other industries, we see a need for Asia Pac CSP’s to hasten their digital transformation to be relevant to their clients.


Tell us a little about IBM’s involvement in being part of this digital disruption.

Our clients are usually some of the largest companies and government entities in the region and world. IBM has really transformed itself over the last 5 years to face the challenges of Digital Disruption. We have built a tremendous digital practice that help our clients in Digital Strategy, Design Thinking, Agile Development Practices, Cloud for Agility, Analytics, Video, IoT and Cognitive/AI Solutions.

CommunicAsia2017 which will be held on the 23rd till the 25th of May and brings to it a comprehensive display of cutting-edge technologies that look at the convergence of technologies and the disruption of traditional business models while showcasing the steps necessary to ensure that businesses stays updated and ready to tackle future consumer demands.