Kyivstar announces launch of Open Telecom Platform for interaction with IT grocery companies
Kyivstar, the mobile network operator, has announced the launch of the Open Telecom Platform, an online platform for interaction with IT grocery companies, which allows connecting to the operator's services and using its data sets for product development and testing.
"Tomorrow we will take the first step. We will present a kind of portal of data versions for our potential partners – Open Telecom Platform from Kyivstar. It will give them the opportunity to connect to us, integrate with us and use some of the more popular service options that we are selling right now as a kind of trial version for creating own products, ideas or applications," Kyivstar President of Alexander Komarov said during the online forum Lviv IT Arena on Friday.
According to him, the available options for using the portal are largely related to the capabilities and data available to Kyivstar as the largest Ukrainian operator.
"This is a big challenge for us – to open access for our partners to our opportunities and introduce new business ideas that can benefit both parties," Komarov said.
At the same time, he said that the implementation of the Open Telecom concept is only one of the elements of the digital transformation of Kyivstar, which the company considers as an addition to its general development plan.
"We are on the path of development from a telecom operator familiar to everyone into a digital product company. Of course, it is very difficult, and it will take more than one day, and even more than one year. This is a long journey that will consist of a number of different cases that need pass to achieve success, Komarov said.
The president of Kyivstar said that the first step in the company's transformational path will be the transition from a closed management system to an open architectural platform.
"We need to enrich the experience of our users by introducing new services that will be created by our partners. From a technology point of view, such a solution could be an open architecture platform, and we are implementing this platform now," he said.
Kyivstar also plans to move away from providing a limited number of traditional services.
"Anyway, now our income for 95% consists of three services – mobile data, voice communication and SMS. We need to change this, and change dramatically," Komarov said.
The third case is to complete the transition from a conventional telecom operator to a digital company.
"And this is the biggest challenge. The history of our relations with startups did not take off mainly because of our internal culture, which is highly bureaucratic and focused on centralization. We need to open up cultural perspectives even deeper than technological ones," the president of Kyivstar said.
According to him, there is no problem for the company to implement an open platform and give potential partners access to their services, data and even to the client base. At the same time, the potential partners will have to resolve many issues related to the internal organizational system of the company and legislation.
"We are very heavily regulated as a representative of critical infrastructure and the largest Ukrainian provider," Komarov said.
Kyivstar is the largest Ukrainian telecommunications operator. It provides communication and data services based on a wide range of mobile and fixed-line technologies, including 3G. By the end of 2018, its services were used by about 26.4 million mobile subscribers and about 0.9 million fixed-line Internet customers.
The shareholder of Kyivstar is the VEON international group (formerly VimpelCom Ltd.). The group's shares are listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange (New York).