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ISPA's BT & IPStream Price Hike Meet

Posted: 03rd Sep, 2004 By: MarkJ
The UK Internet Service Providers Association (ISPA) has reported on the results of a member survey regarding the pending business IPStream ADSL price hikes to BT. Despite a supposedly “sympathetic” BT, we can't see any progress in the report:

On the 3rd of August 2004 BT made an announcement that there would be a rise of up to 32 per cent in the pricing of its “IPStream S” and “IPStream Office” products. The price increases are in line with OFCOM’s Direction published on 26th August 2004 (Direction Setting the Margin between IPStream and ATM Interconnection Prices).

ISPA conducted a consultation of the ISPA membership and delivered the results to BT.

ISPA stated its concern that such an escalation of charges implemented on this scale and in such a time frame – BT only has to give 28 days notice of price increases – may mean ISPs will be forced to charge significantly more for their services, diminish service levels or even close. ISPA believes this will offer less choice of provider for end users, cause a negative impact on competition in the Internet industry and potentially cause SME ISPs to offer services that are not on a par with their larger competitors.

ISPA discussed a variety of options that BT could consider to ease the burden the price increases will have on SME ISPs.

BT listened sympathetically to ISPA’s concerns and agreed to another meeting later in September.

Bruce Stanford, Director Products, BT Wholesale said: “We’ve invested heavily to make broadband a reality for the vast majority of customers across the UK and our investments are continuing. We welcome the opportunity to work in a constructive way with the ISPA to find solutions that will help mitigate the impact of recently applied price increases.”

Jessica Hendrie-Liaño, Chair of the ISPA Council said, “I am encouraged by BT’s sympathetic response on this issue. BT recognises how important appropriate pricing of IPStream is to ISPA’s SME ISP members and communicated a concern for its IPStream clients. ISPA’s solid research was the basis of an extremely effective representation to BT and we look forward to an even more positive meeting with BT later this month.”

Matthew Hare, Chair of the ISPA Sub-Group on Broadband and Managing Director of Community Internet said, "Community Internet uses IPStream from BT to deliver broadband connectivity to our business customers. The recent price rises mandated by OFCOM was a real blow. ISPA, representing many other SME ISPs like my own, offers me the best chance to address this issue effectively."


Lots of the usual PR drivel and nothing new in the way of real progress, perhaps the next meeting will result in a true proposal of some kind.
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