Network carrier China Telecom Europe has ambitious plans to expand its footprint in the European market through the acquisition of sizeable ITC firms, the company's managing director Ou Yan has revealed to V3.co.uk.
The organisation has a reasonable customer base using its network that links Europe to the Asia Pacific region, but Ou explained that buying companies will help the firm make a "quantum leap" forward.
"At the moment we are not the biggest brand on the market and some customers don't know our name. With the acquisition of a large ICT company, though, we can increase our customer base and enhance our brand awareness," he said.
"At the moment we're just assessing the right move for us, but we want something that has a base across Europe so we can grow exponentially."
While China Telecom Europe is looking to grow inorganically, it has had a smooth transistion to the European market, turning over revenue of £13m in 2010, and boasting international carriers and multi-national corporations as customers.
Ou did not identify any these, customers but said that the firm is attractive because it can cut latency from around 500-600m/s to around 200m/s between Europe and Asia by avoiding US exchanges.
Additionally, China Telecom Europe's network is based on four mainland links running through Russia, Mongolia and Kazakhstan, making it more resilient than the undersea cables that are often affected by earthquakes.
"As traffic grows between the two regions and more businesses look to reduce latency by avoiding the US exchanges, the creation of those terrestrial links is very appealing," Ou said.
On the issue of security, a concern that often raises its head when Chinese companies are involved, Ou was adamant that there are no issues for customers, as the firm has always been open and clear about its dealings since its inception in 2006.
"When we formed we spoke with Ofcom and the UK government to explain our aims and outline our business plans, and we worked with a major legal firm to ensure we follow local regulatory environments," he said.
China Telecom Europe is clearly not viewed with any suspicion by the UK authorities. Ou explained that he had been invited to an event hosted by Lord Green, minister for trade and industry, to discuss how the UK can deliver high-speed broadband access.
"We wouldn't do any of the build ourselves, but we can certainly offer guidance and experience on how to manage and install large-scale networks as China Telecom has around 85 million broadband customers in China," he said.
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