Deutsche Telekom pursues SME growth with new digital services unit
Deutsche Telekom (DT) CEO Timotheus Höttges took to LinkedIn to explain how new changes at the group are designed to place the focus front and centre on the digital transformation of enterprise customers in Germany.
“We are creating a digital offer for the German ‘Mittelstand’,” he explained, referring to Germany’s small and medium-size enterprise (SME) market. This will involve the creation of a new digital unit under Telekom Deutschland, which is responsible for the group’s domestic market operations.
According to Srini Gopalan, CEO of Telekom Deutschland, the new unit will be established on 1 January 2023 and will incorporate around 1,700 employees from T-Systems Multimedia Solutions GmbH (MMS), which is being transferred out of T-Systems and into Telekom Deutschland.
The new operation will carry DT’s “Made in Germany” standard for digital service offerings. While the initial focus will be on SMEs and Germany, DT signalled that other types of customers as well as other geographies could be targeted in future.
“Eight out of ten midsize companies are looking for digital solutions from a single source,” Gopalan said. “Customers today no longer just ask about the speed of their Internet connection or the rate of their mobile communications contract. They are asking: ‘How can I make my digital touchpoint with the customer more engaging?’ ‘How can I automate my logistics?’ It’s all about automation, intelligent use of data and new business models.”
The move also signals a further revamp of the group’s troubled enterprise IT division T-Systems, which has been undergoing a transformation process over the past five years. Reports in recent weeks suggested that DT has now shelved plans to sell T-Systems and instead intends to retain it within the group.
According to Höttges, T-Systems is being given more freedom to invest in business fields such as automotive, health care and public administration. The IT service provider will focus on consultancy, cloud services and digital solutions including cybersecurity for large customers.
“The digital world is changing. Telecommunications companies that have not nurtured their digital skills have fallen behind in the B2B market. We believe in digitalisation ‘Made in Germany’,” Höttges said.