Banff 2011 Video Interviews: Tom Perlmutter, NFB Chairperson; Tony Lacavera, Chairman Globalive/WIND Mobile; Michael Hennessy, SVP TELUS; Mike Farah, President of Production, Funny or Die; Ariel Garten, CEO InteraXon; Harmony Wagner, Creative Producer BunnyBop; Heather Allin, President of ACTRA Toronto, Siobhan McCarthy, Actress & clown

Monday, 20 June, 2011

The following are links to my video interviews conducted at Banff World Media Festival 2011 (more to come):

* Tom Perlmutter – NFB Chairperson & Government Film Commissioner;

* Tony Lacavera, Chairman & CEO, Globalive (WIND Mobile);

* Michael Hennessy, Senior VP, Regulatory and Government Affairs, TELUS;

* Mike Farah, President of Production, Funny or Die;

* Ariel Garten, CEO InteraXon;

* Harmony Wagner, Creative Producer, Periscope Pictures (preschool series BunnyBop)

* Heather Allin, President of ACTRA Toronto.

* Siobhan McCarthy, Actress & clown, blyssful productions.


Tony Lacavera, Chairman & CEO, Globalive (WIND Mobile) interview @ Banff World Media Festival 2011

Saturday, 18 June, 2011

Anthony Lacavera, Chairman & CEO, Globalive (WIND Mobile)

Since 2009, I had the pleasure to interview Tony Lacavera, Chairman & CEO, Globalive/WIND Mobile for a few times (see here and here). So it was my pleasure to chat with Tony again @Banff World Media Festival 2011.

Here are a few highlights of my video interview with Tony, By the way, also check out my video interview with Michael Hennessy, TELUS Senior VP, Regulatory and Government Affairs.

* 0:00 I asked Tony for his take on the Banff session where he had a few “debates” with Michael Hennessy, Senior VP, Regulatory and Government Affairs, TELUS.

* 0:36 I asked Tony about the recent Federal Court of Appeal panel decision in favour of WIND Mobile. (see my tweets here with link to National Post article and here)

* 1:50 Have the other guys started the appeal process and asked the Supreme Court of Canada to review the case?

* 2:35 Did Tony bring up the topic of the court rulings with Chairman of the CRTC?

* 2:46 Is WIND feeling the pressure now that Moblicity is in Calgary?

* 3:18 What about the dead coverage zones in the C-Train tunnels near downtown Calgary? (Tony also talked about the coverage inside Toronto TTC.)

* 4:54 The revamping of the WIND customer service touchpoints.
***

For all other Banff 2011 related interviews, please see here.


Tony Lacavera, Chairman & CEO, Globalive (WIND Mobile) interview @ Banff World Media Festival 2011

Wednesday, 15 June, 2011

Anthony Lacavera, Chairman & CEO, Globalive (WIND Mobile)

Since 2009, I had the pleasure to chat with Tony Lacavera, Chairman & CEO, Globalive/WIND Mobile for a few times (see here and here). So it is my pleasure to chat with Tony again @Banff World Media Festival 2011.

It will take me some time to write the article plus process & upload the video after Banff. Stay tune.

***

Jun 18 update: Done! Check out my article and video interview with Tony.


Happy First Year WIND Mobile !!!

Thursday, 16 December, 2010

Can’t believe it is one year already, happy first year WIND Mobile !!! Here are some of my entries and video interviews related to WIND Mobile (older entries first),

WIND Mobile Calgary Launch (video interviews with CEO Ken Campbell, CCO Chris Robbins) [Dec 2009]

WIND Mobile Calgary service review & Interview with WIND CEO Ken Campbell [Mar 2010]

Tony Lacavera, Globalive & WIND Mobile Chairman, post Banff World TV Festival interview [July 2010]

WIND Mobile exceeds 100,000 users [Aug 2010]

Egyptian Connection: Naguib Sawiris, Orascom, Globalive, WIND Mobile [Nov 2010]


WIND Mobile exceeds 100,000 users

Thursday, 12 August, 2010

Anthony (Tony) Lacavera, Chairman of Globalive

WIND Mobile Chairman Tony Lacavera has confirmed that WIND now has more than 100,000 subscribers.

In early July I received confirmation that WIND Mobile had passed the 100,000 mark in terms of new subscribers. While we try and view all customers individually, we recognized that this was a major milestone for both WIND Mobile and for the Canadian wireless consumer.

Globe and Mail is reporting (emphasis added),

The [users] number, which the company reached in early July, came out as Wind’s Egyptian financial and operational backer, Orascom Telecom Holding SAE, reports its second quarter financial earnings. Orascom, previously, said it would include Wind’s subscriber numbers for investors.

Wind chairman Anthony Lacavera, who waged a high profile battle against the incumbent providers when he was denied the ability to launch by Canada’s telecom regulator for violating foreign ownership rules, said he is buoyed by the results and that they show the company is gaining momentum.

“We’re pummelling them,” said Mr. Lacavera in an interview. “We added subscribers in our coverage area at twice the speed of incumbents in the same time frame.”

WIND Mobile currently operates in Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Toronto, and Ottawa and are licensed to operate in all provinces in Canada except Quebec.

Here is my July 2010 phone interview with Tony.


Tony Lacavera, Globalive & WIND Mobile Chairman, post Banff World TV Festival interview, July 2010

Friday, 9 July, 2010

Tony Lacavera (WIND Mobile) & Konrad von Finckenstein (CRTC)

It was my pleasure finally to meet Tony Lacavera, chairman of Globalive & WIND Mobile, in person at the CRTC Breakfast at 2010 Banff World TV Festival after interviewing Tony over the phone in Sept 08 and Dec 09. I wanted to video interview Tony after the breakfast but he had a plane to catch so Tony promised to let me have another phone interview with him.

This article contains some of the questions and my research for my July 2010 phone interview with Tony (mp3) or (streaming audio here).

- I asked Tony about his experience of meeting the CRTC chairman Konrad von Finckenstein in person and if they resolved any disagreement.

- Tony talked about how he reached out to find international financial backings and ultimately finding Egyptian financial backings from Orascom to launch WIND Mobile. How Tony met Orascom‘s Business Development Officer Michael O’Connor (a Canadian from Peterborough, Ontario) and then meet Orascom‘s executive chairman Naguib Sawiris. (More in this undated Financial Post story, “Globalive consortium ‘did it all in six days’)

- How is WIND Mobile preparing for Sept 1st, 2011 when analog TV broadcast goes digital and those old analog TV frequency spectrum becomes available ? Any plans to bid for some new frequencies? (note: WIND currently doesn’t have coverage in Quebec.) Is WIND ready for new competitions from winners of the upcoming auction?

- Is WIND Mobile worried about Rogers’ soon to be launched new wireless brand Chatr? Will WIND match offering and prices from Chatr? It is worth noting that Tony gave a very different response than Mobilicity.

- On Twitter, it seems like @WIND_Cares is not as helpful nor as responsive as @Telussupport or @RogersHelps. Does WIND plan to improve on its Twitter’s responsiveness?

When I asked Tony about Twitter, I have the following case in mind: A Fido user complained about Fido repeatedly (two examples here and here) and got a significant escalation: “escalating this to Office of the President” from @RogersHelps, here, and here. And finally ended with user’s satisfaction here (almost) and here (for real on 3:40pm, 7th July, 2010).

So I think WIND can do a much better job here.

- Good to see WIND Mobile is keeping its promise and keeping an open blog taking users’ comments and feedback. Does WIND find it difficult to get useful insight from the comments and feedback which sometimes has lots of “noise”? I asked Tony to give some specific ideas or suggestions from users that WIND has implemented, unfortunately Tony wasn’t able to give me any examples.

- Tony mentioned that both him and Ken Campbell, WIND Mobile CEO are available to Canadians when the other wireless providers aren’t.

- Tony was really proud that Better Business Bureau gives WIND Mobile a B+ rating recently while other wireless providers were given “F”s.

note: Upon further investigation, I don’t know if BBB gives out rating to the wireless company as a whole or to a particular store? For example, Rogers is getting an “A+” in this Halifax location and Bell Mobility is getting a “D” in this Mississauga location. It seems to me, in this case, a company-level rating is more useful than a store-level rating.

- WIND Mobile had lots of network problems a few weeks ago in my area (Calgary SW) and it seems to have improved in the last few weeks. While Tony was unable/unwilling to tell me how many network towers are in Calgary, he told me the total number of towers have doubled since launch.

- Is WIND Mobile able to get network or tower sharing access with incumbents? In an April 2010 speech, Tony mentioned that WIND had sent over 100 sharing requests to the incumbents and had no success. Unfortunately, this is still true! The incumbents are doing their best to NOT help WIND. :)

- The top WIND Mobile data user has been reportedly used 118 GB in one month. I suggested that using the rate of 5 cents per MB charged by the incumbents, 3 GB max data for the best $100/moth plan, the additional charges for the additional 115GB will be $5,888!!! Tony talked about the existing well publicized fair usage data policy with no cap, which I think is very fair.

- Tony also talked about how WIND see Public Mobile and Mobilicity as pure play wireless company. And since there aren’t much details on Shaw’s wireless plan, Tony didn’t have much to say yet.

- Finally, I asked Tony will WIND consider selling out to the big three in a few years down the road. And what kind of new promotions are coming up in coming months.

If you haven’t already, please have a listen to my July 2010 phone interview (mp3) or (streaming audio here).

***

In the following 2010 Banff World TV Festival video, Tony introduces CRTC Chairman Konrad Finckenstein, and Chairman Konrad talks about Tony.

****

Some other interesting speech or talk by Tony.

Video of Tony on BNN talking about WIND Mobile unlimited data plans and Rogers’ Chatr. [HT MobileSyrup]

WIND CEO Anthony Lacavera Keynote: CTS 2010

Tony Lacavera at the Empire Club Speech [HT MobileSyrup.com]

Globalive, DAVE & Public Mobile debate at 2009 CTS [by MobileSyrup] [note: weak audio & video, but good content]


Globalive Chairman Tony Lacavera phone interview (after government overturned CRTC decision)

Sunday, 13 December, 2009

Anthony (Tony) Lacavera, Chairman of Globalive I appreciate very much Globalive chairman Tony Lacavera taking time today (a Sunday) to have an interview with me to talk about Globalive/WIND Mobile‘s plans after the government of Canada overturning the CRTC decision 2009-678 (PDF).

As a current Bell Mobility customer, I am excited to see a new wireless provider coming to the oligopolistic Canadian marketplace. The following are some highlights of my interview with Tony (mp3 download).

WIND Mobile‘s plan to sign up new customers before Christmas and new year

WIND Mobile stores will open this week and Tony confirmed that WIND will roll out its wireless service as soon as possible and most likely before Christmas. I tried but was unable to get Tony to say the launch will be this week. Tony sees WIND has one chance to demonstrate to Canadians that it is a serious 4th national wireless provider competing with the likes of Bell, Telus, and Rogers. So he wants to launch when everything is ready. (Dec 15th update: BlackBerry Bold 9700Dec 14th update: According to WIND’s latest press release, at 10:30am on Dec 16th, Tony and Ken Campbell, CEO of WIND will be unveiling the WIND Mobile store, and “the full line-up of products and services.   The WIND network is currently live and fully operational with beta customers actively using the service and providing feedback.“)

Phones, Apple iPhones, and Google Phones

WIND will have a few different phones available at launch and hope to expand on the choices available to include more offers. At launch, iPhones will not be available but will be available in the near future as WIND network can technically support the phones. As to the Google Phones, Tony also assured me the WIND network can support it when the phones are available. (Dec 14 Update: Some pricing & devices rumours from MobileSyrup, “Are these the Wind Mobile price plans?” and “The week the WIND came rushing in…“. We will know for sure on Dec 16th.)

Last Friday on BNN, Tony said WIND Mobile has a target of 4-6 million subscribers in 5 years. I asked about their expected number of new customers vs customers that switch?

Tony explained that it will be difficult to estimate as different cities have different number of providers and level of competitions. For example, in Toronto, there are 7 brands/sub-brands operating and that is different from other smaller cities.

(Dec 14 update: BMO Nesbitt Burns telecom analyst Peter Rhamey estimates, “three dominant players – BCE (BCE-T), Telus (T-T) and Rogers Communcations (RCI-T) – stand to see a 5 to 10 per cent decline in subscriber additions next year … along with a price war, will erode earnings per share by 2.5 per cent at BCE and 5 per cent at Telus and Rogers“)

* Comment re “foreign control limits”

In a blog post “Government Overturns CRTC Giving Globalive The Go-Ahead” by University of Ottawa’s Professor Michael Geist, he picked two specific paragraphs in the government of Canada’s “Order-in-Council” (PDF) and his reading and analysis is this (emphasis added),

These paragraphs signal the prioritization of enhanced competition in the marketplace.  With support for foreign investment, the removal of foreign control limits may not be far behind.

Tony reiterated the importance of the foreign control limits and Globalive is a Canadian company as he had said to other media outlets. You can listen to his answer in the audio interview.

* Telus’ Twitter comment

I asked for Tony’s comment to the following tweet by Michael Hennessy, Senior VP, Regulatory and Government Affairs, Telus

If Wind is canadian then so was King Tut [...]

and my light-hearted reply to Michael,

Merry Christmas Michael. My Christmas comes early today! [...]

I will let you hear what Tony said in response to the above tweets in the audio interview. :)

* Few other questions & answers

Tony also indicated that WIND Mobile is a startup company, the network is brand new, and stated that “there is no question that we are going to make mistakes and it is not going to be perfect.” But Tony emphasized their main differences with the incumbents likes of Bell/Telus/Rogers is that WIND Mobile is going to keep listening to customers, “We need feedback on WINDMobile.ca … so we can constantly improve the offering”.

I’ve asked a few other questions which you can listen to the Q&As in my interview with Tony (mp3 download) or streaming audio here.

*******

Only time will tell if WIND Mobile can deliver on their promises. The first things we will see are the pricing and service plans. And then the customers will have a chance to give their feedback on the call qualities and internet surfing experiences, etc. Later, we will see if Canadians will get new phone offerings like the iPhones and Androids “soon” as promised. I hope WIND will keep its promises and truly listen to its customers’ feedback and suggestions.

Read the rest of this entry »


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