Long reads

Cable Congress Speaker Interview: Luis Lopes, Zon Multimedia

What should cable’s priority be for 2011

2012 will be a difficult year for all businesses in Portugal and cable will not be an exception although it is much more resilient than many other businesses. That said, we should continue to keep pushing innovation, higher broadband speeds and improving quality of service. This is a very dynamic sector and in order to compete we have to keep improving our value proposition and relevance of our products and services. I see a lot of innovation in customer interfaces and multiscreen strategies driven by cable companies

How will cable compete with  peers in the connectivity market?

I don’t think that there is a connectivity market so to speak. There are several markets, namely enterprise, a SME/SOHO and residential markets. Our customers tend to buy bundles for their specific needs. They often include connectivity, content, and voice. I believe that pricing, product features and perception of quality of service play a significant role in customer preferences. Cable operators are very well positioned in this regard because of the relatively low cost to upgrade their networks and provide very fast broadband, access to content and deep understanding of customer´s needs

Will growth in VOD be sustained in 2012?

We will continue to improve on UI and recommendation engines in our set-up boxes but also we will go out of the living room and push VOD through a multiscreen approach. For example ZON IRIS customers can watch VOD on their TV set, PCs and iPads.

How do you plan to build on Zon’s impressive growth in mobile subscribers last year?

We are happy with our progression in the mobile space. We have two areas in which we have been growing: one is a more traditional voice and data approach based on a light-MVNO agreement. Another is on the WiFi and public WiFi where we have built more than 500,000 hotspots, free for ZON customers. It is a unique differentiated value-proposition in the Portuguese market and has proven to be a great success

What is your guilty pleasure when it comes to gadgets or specific technologies?

I love technology and like to use more gadgets than I should! In my home there are twice as many PCs as people, several tablets…my four year old son is even a more intensive user than I am. He loves to use the ZON IRIS app to watch kids channel on the iPad.

Luis Lopes is COO at Zon Multimedia. He will be speaking at Cable Congress, which takes place in Brussels from March 7-9 2012.