BT will merge its services business units, Syntegra and BT Syncordia Solutions, next month to create a top 20 worldwide services player.
Details of the merger will not be released until mid July, but the companies said they would concentrate on providing a broad spectrum of converged services for customers.
"Within BT we are forming from mid July onwards a refocus in the area of our solutions business. Part of that will be bringing together Syncordia and Syntegra's ability," said Danny Garvey, director of marketing and strategy at Syncordia.
Speculation that the two units would merge started after the creation of BT Worldwide in February, which promised under the leadership of Alfred Mockett to concentrate on providing, "world class communications services."
In the 3 June issue of its monthly newsletter System House, analyst firm Richard Holway says the two units will create a "formidable force" in the network services market.
Anthony Millar, analyst at Richard Holway said combining the systems integration strengths of Syntegra with the network management ability of BT Syncordia Solutions makes perfect sense.
"It's almost a statement of the bleedin' obvious that these two should get together with a broader offering," said Millar. "It seemed that BT was really losing out on the potential synergies of two parts of its business."
"It will be a very formidable force in the network related side. We're delighted that BT has decided to do it," he added.
But Garvey said BT was in no rush to combine the businesses. "It's not something that we needed to do now, we could have done it in 12 months," he said.
Combined, the two BT units - given the working title BT Solutions - will be one of the top 20 global systems houses, according to Millar, stepping on the turf of major players like EDS and IBM as well as the datacomms providers like Cisco.
"Because of the increasing convergence of telecoms with traditional IT, really anyone in the IT services marketplace clearly has to be able to operate in the context of telecoms services as well," he said.
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