|Bid||52.400 x 0|
|Ask||52.450 x 0|
|Day's range||52.250 - 52.900|
|52-week range||45.200 - 70.000|
|Beta (5Y monthly)||0.61|
|PE ratio (TTM)||9.01|
|Earnings date||13 Aug 2020|
|Forward dividend & yield||3.06 (5.83%)|
|Ex-dividend date||27 Aug 2020|
|1y target est||86.68|
(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. ban on Huawei Technologies Co. was supposed to hand leadership of the lucrative market for wireless base stations to Ericsson AB and Nokia Oyj. It’s not working out that way.The crackdown on China’s largest technology company has given startups such as Altiostar Networks Inc. and new entrants including Qualcomm Inc. a rare opportunity to grab a slice of the $35 billion the telecom industry spends each year on this crucial part of mobile phone networks.“This could break up that tech vendor lock-in that’s been around for decades,” said Andre Fuetsch, chief technology officer of network services at AT&T Inc., the third largest U.S. wireless carrier. “It’s about how do you create a much more competitive, innovative ecosystem.”Base stations are the heart of cellular networks, powering millions of antennas that perch on cell towers and city rooftops all over the world. Until recently, these boxes were a proprietary combination of processors and software that had to be purchased all at once. Huawei, Ericsson and Nokia account for three quarters of this market, which is worth as much as $35 billion a year, according to researcher Dell’Oro Group.Open radio access network, or O-RAN, changes this by creating an open standard for base station design and ensuring all the software and components work well together -- no matter who is supplying the ingredients.This is a potentially radical shift. When telecom giants such as AT&T and China Mobile Ltd. want to expand their network they usually have to call their existing supplier and order more of the same because a box from Nokia won’t work with one from Ericsson. The new technology lets wireless carriers mix and match more easily.The initiative also means that new suppliers can succeed by focusing on one or two components, or a single piece of software, rather than spending lots of time and money building a whole base station from the ground up.O-RAN gear has been used sparingly since an industry alliance was formed to promote the technology in 2018. But when the U.S. toughened its stance against Huawei last year and encouraged other countries to crack down, interest in O-RAN adoption increased. The Chinese tech giant is a low-cost provider. Now it’s unavailable in some markets, carriers are more willing to look at alternative suppliers embracing the more flexible O-RAN approach.“Increased geopolitical uncertainty is helping them to get an invite to the table they would not normally have had,” Dell’Oro Group analyst Stefan Pongratz said. “Multiple vendors, not just in Europe but across the world, are basically reassessing their exposure to Huawei.”How Huawei Landed at the Center of Global Tech Tussle: QuickTakeOpen standard base stations will generate sales of about $5 billion in the next five years, more than originally predicted, according to Dell’Oro.Ericsson questions the performance and cost-efficiency of current O-RAN offerings. But the telecom companies, who decide where the money is spent, aren’t being shy about telling incumbent providers to get on board or risk being left behind.“We’ve been candid with them: This is the architecture that the operator community is pursuing,” said Adam Koeppe, who oversees technology strategy, architecture and planning at Verizon Communications Inc., the biggest U.S. wireless carrier.The list of companies vying to fill the gap left by Huawei is a mixture of some of the oldest names in technology and newcomers. Qualcomm, Intel Corp., Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Dell Technologies Inc., Cisco Systems Inc., Fujitsu Ltd. and NEC Corp. are offering various parts of the new base station technology. Startups such as Altiostar, Airspan Networks and Mavenir Systems are trying to carve out niches, too.O-RAN proponents point to the success of Rakuten Inc., a Japanese e-commerce provider that has used the technology to break into mobile phone services. The company began 4G wireless service in April and is upgrading to 5G now, using O-RAN suppliers including NEC, Qualcomm, Intel, Altiostar and Airspan. Rakuten said using this more open approach has cut capital expenditure by 40% and reduced operating costs 30%.Dish Network Corp. is building a 5G wireless network in the U.S. with help from Altiostar. New projects like this are great, but the real opportunity is with operators that are shifting their existing networks to O-RAN, according to Thierry Maupilé, Altiostar’s executive vice president of strategy and product management. The Tewksbury, Massachusetts-based company has raised more than $300 million from investors such as Rakuten, Qualcomm and Cisco.Why 5G Mobile Is Arriving With a Subplot of Espionage: QuickTakeO-RAN is part of a broader push to make all kinds of computer networks more flexible and easy to control. By standardizing hardware and using more software in centralized data centers, companies can run networks more cheaply, while fixing and upgrading them more easily. 5G will need this flexibility to work well.For AT&T, the new approach has already started to help. The company has introduced Samsung equipment based on O-RAN in areas where it had previously been limited to Ericsson gear, AT&T’s Fuetsch said.Nokia expects to have a full range of O-RAN offerings available in 2021. Some of the final standards aren’t yet set and they need to be completed and tested which will take time, according to Sandro Tavares, global head of marketing.“O-RAN is supported by more than 20 major operators around the world, so it is pretty clear that there is a strong push for it to happen,” he said. “This is a big move for our industry, and it is clear for the main players that we should not be cutting corners in this process.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- The blockchain world today is thousands of disparate platforms that can’t talk to each other. So a little-known startup hatched one of the most ambitious plans yet to bridge all the divides -- and it’s got the backing of the Chinese government.Beijing-based Red Date Technology is at the heart of China’s first state-backed blockchain initiative, envisioned as a one-stop hub for developers to build decentralized applications (dapps) for everything from money transactions to drug-delivery tracing. Think of it as the crypto-world equivalent of a cloud service like Amazon Web Services or Microsoft Azure that hooks up and supports a multitude of software and platforms. Since its April roll-out, the Blockchain-based Service Network (or BSN) has attracted more than 6,000 enterprise, government and individual users primarily from China.Red Date, backed by the nation’s top economic planner, is the mastermind of the undertaking. The startup’s goal is to push out BSN globally, allowing anyone to create blockchain-based apps without having to then publish offerings on siloed platforms one by one, Chief Executive Officer He Yifan said.“The internet took off only after it became cheap for everyone to build websites,” He said in a video interview. “Our mission is to put everything blockchain-related onto BSN’s platform.”Connecting fragmented blockchains is key to moving the technology underpinning cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin beyond just trades and speculation. Projects like Cosmos and Polkadot are competing to establish industry standards, much like the http protocol for the web. BSN, however, simply aspires to be the glue that joins various networks and protocols.It’s all about doing it fast and cheap, He says. BSN will support its first batch of six public blockchains including Ethereum, EOS and NEO in August, and it’s looking to integrate more than 100 public chains within a year, He said. By leveraging BSN’s tools and data storage services, developers will be able to slash 90% off the cost of creating and running a dapp, he estimates.“It’s physically bringing the cloud resources needed online to power global blockchains,” said Matthew Graham, CEO of Beijing-based crypto consultancy Sino Global Capital. “BSN is the first and only project to bring this to blockchain in an agnostic way.”A former private-equity investor, the 44-year-old He founded Red Date in 2014 with his own money as a tech supplier to Chinese smart-city projects. That was when he established relationships with national champions China Mobile and UnionPay, as well as the State Information Center, a think tank under the country’s top economic planning agency. The four entities created BSN in 2018, and the three firms have since spent around 200 million yuan ($30 million) to build out the technology, He said.The initial idea -- which the likes of Baidu Inc. and crypto exchange Huobi support -- was to provide tools to develop software on tokenless, permissioned blockchains, without worrying about the complicated infrastructure. Some of the most-popular real-world applications enabled by BSN involve government documentation and supply-chain management, He said, without naming them.Beijing is in a love-hate relationship with blockchain: It wants to use the technology to serve the real economy, but has banned exchange trading and crowdfunding facilitated by crypto tokens like Bitcoin and Ether. Within the country’s borders, developers won’t be able to use BSN to access public networks like Ethereum and NEO, which incentivize users via their digital tokens.This, along with distrust of Chinese-made technology amid escalating geopolitical tensions, is a major obstacle to BSN’s global ambitions. But BSN will set up an offshore branch to integrate with public chains, He said. Red Date, through its Hong Kong offices, will choose at least seven partners without Chinese affiliations to co-manage a new foundation dubbed BSN International, he said, adding details have yet to be finalized.BSN will charge dapp creators fees based on their use of cloud storage space, which are deployed in global cities and purchased from companies like Amazon Web Services, He said. He estimates it will take three to five years to make the project profitable. He says Red Date won’t take funding from China’s government or state enterprises, preferring to remain independent -- even though it works hand-in-glove with a government think tank and two powerful Beijing-backed corporations. The entrepreneur said the project will become more transparent by going open-source in two to three years.”Whatever your concern is, you can check our source code,” He said.(Updates with target for open-sourcing in the penultimate paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
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