Geppert Joins Carleton in Leading KPMG's Communications Practice

New National Industry Director for Communications Available to Discuss

Developments in Telecommunications Industry



Apr 02, 2001, 01:00 ET from KPMG LLP

    NEW YORK, April 2 /PRNewswire/ -- KPMG LLP, the professional services
 firm, today announced that Carl Geppert has joined the firm as a partner and
 national industry director of its Communications practice.
     In his role, Geppert will focus on key segments of the communications
 industry, including Regional Bell Operating Companies (RBOCs), incumbent local
 exchange carriers and interexchange carriers, and Competitive Local Exchange
 Carriers (CLECs). He joins Mark Carleton, also a national industry director of
 KPMG's Communications practice with overall responsibilities for accounts in
 the telecom, cable, wireless and satellite industries.
     Prior to joining KPMG, Geppert worked at Andersen for more than 20 years,
 assisting communications companies on significant financial, regulatory,
 information technology and business issues. As a member of Andersen's global
 technology, media and communications group, Geppert was the partner-in-charge
 of the firm's global revenue assurance consulting practice in the
 communications industry.  He has extensive experience in addressing revenue
 assurance risks and issues for both incumbent and competitive carriers in the
 retail, wholesale (intercarrier), data and other non-regulated service areas.
     As a national industry director for KPMG's communications practice, a
 segment of the firm's Information, Communications and Entertainment (ICESM)
 line of business, Geppert will tap into his considerable experience dealing
 with RBOCs, CLECs and long-distance companies. His responsibilities include
 driving KPMG's global suite of products, services and tools in the
 telecommunications risk management area, including business risk assessment,
 revenue assurance and billing issues. Geppert, who is located in Denver,
 Colo., will be available to discuss global trends in the communications
 industry and address the regulatory, technical and financial challenges facing
 communications companies today.
     KPMG's ICE line of business focuses on developing strategies for and
 improving operations in the converging and competitive fields of
 communications, electronics, software and media.  The ICE practice has
 developed a solid position in areas such as international expansion, initial
 public offerings, mergers and strategic alliances.
     KPMG LLP is the accounting and tax firm that understands the needs of
 business in the global economy. We help our clients by devising
 results-oriented business strategies, providing insights that help them stay
 ahead of the competition and achieve market-leading results. KPMG LLP is the
 U.S. member firm of KPMG International. KPMG International's member firms have
 more than 108,000 professionals, including 7,000 partners, in 159 countries.
 KPMG's Web site is http://www.us.kpmg.com
 
     EDITOR'S NOTE: Attached to the release is a Q&A commentary with Carl
 Geppert on trends in the communications industry.
 
    Q&A with Carl Geppert, KPMG's National Industry Director, Communications
                     Trends in the Communications Industry
 
     Q. Where is the growth in the communications industry?
 
     I see three key areas of growth: continued expansion of services by the
 RBOCs (Regional Bell Operating Companies), continued consolidation and
 expansion of services in the international  arena, and growth in the provision
 of data services.
     Looking at the RBOCs, it's going to be an interesting year for them. In
 long distance, they can continue to enter markets -- particularly in-region
 long distance -- that were previously off limits and gain marketshare. In the
 past year, for example, Verizon got back into the long distance business in
 New York and SBC got approval to offer long distance services in several of
 their states.
     Second, merger and acquisition activity could ramp up for international
 and domestic players, as we saw with Voicestream and Deutsche Telekom last
 year. With the telecom market in a slowdown, the market values of many
 domestic telcos have grown appealing to foreign companies that are seeking a
 toehold in the states.
     Finally, you will also see significant, continued growth in the area of
 data, particularly in services that already integrate voice over the Internet.
 The ability to add a data component to those offering voice over the Net could
 begin to emerge. Traditional carriers will also begin to move more forcefully
 into this arena, as video becomes a more important element of the telecom
 industry.
 
     Q. What key trends do you see on the horizon?
 
     The one-stop communications concept is still alive and well and continues
 to be used in order to give customers a single source for their communications
 needs. So many choices exist for customers, and finding a way to capture their
 undivided attention will be a challenge. Video and broadband could in some
 ways serve as the core of any bundling plan. Even though broadband technology
 has its skeptics, I still think it will prove to be a critical element of any
 one-stop source of communications needs. Additionally, these are the services
 of tomorrow, and are powerful elements in attracting a customer's attention
 and interest.
     Additionally, there could be more non-traditional mergers coming into
 light, as we saw with AOL-Time Warner or Vivendi and Universal. Companies will
 extend horizontally in order to build new sources of revenue and services that
 retain customers. Vertical pairings -- such as an RBOC and a long-distance
 leader -- will become more likely as market valuations offer great assets at
 value prices.
 
     Q. Who is best positioned to succeed in telecom in 2001?
 
     Those who realize that you can't be all things to all people will be
 closer to the mark of success. Those who focus on a core business and do it
 well are best positioned.  Again it seems that the RBOCs are currently in a
 good position. They have established businesses with positive cash flows and
 access to capital. Plus, they've spent a good deal of time focusing on the
 core business, which has given them a good base to build from.
     However, they are still regulated in many respects, so their hands are
 tied in what they can and cannot do in certain areas. Even with their prime
 position, they have some high hurdles to overcome in order to get into in any
 other lines of business.
 
 

SOURCE KPMG LLP
    NEW YORK, April 2 /PRNewswire/ -- KPMG LLP, the professional services
 firm, today announced that Carl Geppert has joined the firm as a partner and
 national industry director of its Communications practice.
     In his role, Geppert will focus on key segments of the communications
 industry, including Regional Bell Operating Companies (RBOCs), incumbent local
 exchange carriers and interexchange carriers, and Competitive Local Exchange
 Carriers (CLECs). He joins Mark Carleton, also a national industry director of
 KPMG's Communications practice with overall responsibilities for accounts in
 the telecom, cable, wireless and satellite industries.
     Prior to joining KPMG, Geppert worked at Andersen for more than 20 years,
 assisting communications companies on significant financial, regulatory,
 information technology and business issues. As a member of Andersen's global
 technology, media and communications group, Geppert was the partner-in-charge
 of the firm's global revenue assurance consulting practice in the
 communications industry.  He has extensive experience in addressing revenue
 assurance risks and issues for both incumbent and competitive carriers in the
 retail, wholesale (intercarrier), data and other non-regulated service areas.
     As a national industry director for KPMG's communications practice, a
 segment of the firm's Information, Communications and Entertainment (ICESM)
 line of business, Geppert will tap into his considerable experience dealing
 with RBOCs, CLECs and long-distance companies. His responsibilities include
 driving KPMG's global suite of products, services and tools in the
 telecommunications risk management area, including business risk assessment,
 revenue assurance and billing issues. Geppert, who is located in Denver,
 Colo., will be available to discuss global trends in the communications
 industry and address the regulatory, technical and financial challenges facing
 communications companies today.
     KPMG's ICE line of business focuses on developing strategies for and
 improving operations in the converging and competitive fields of
 communications, electronics, software and media.  The ICE practice has
 developed a solid position in areas such as international expansion, initial
 public offerings, mergers and strategic alliances.
     KPMG LLP is the accounting and tax firm that understands the needs of
 business in the global economy. We help our clients by devising
 results-oriented business strategies, providing insights that help them stay
 ahead of the competition and achieve market-leading results. KPMG LLP is the
 U.S. member firm of KPMG International. KPMG International's member firms have
 more than 108,000 professionals, including 7,000 partners, in 159 countries.
 KPMG's Web site is http://www.us.kpmg.com
 
     EDITOR'S NOTE: Attached to the release is a Q&A commentary with Carl
 Geppert on trends in the communications industry.
 
    Q&A with Carl Geppert, KPMG's National Industry Director, Communications
                     Trends in the Communications Industry
 
     Q. Where is the growth in the communications industry?
 
     I see three key areas of growth: continued expansion of services by the
 RBOCs (Regional Bell Operating Companies), continued consolidation and
 expansion of services in the international  arena, and growth in the provision
 of data services.
     Looking at the RBOCs, it's going to be an interesting year for them. In
 long distance, they can continue to enter markets -- particularly in-region
 long distance -- that were previously off limits and gain marketshare. In the
 past year, for example, Verizon got back into the long distance business in
 New York and SBC got approval to offer long distance services in several of
 their states.
     Second, merger and acquisition activity could ramp up for international
 and domestic players, as we saw with Voicestream and Deutsche Telekom last
 year. With the telecom market in a slowdown, the market values of many
 domestic telcos have grown appealing to foreign companies that are seeking a
 toehold in the states.
     Finally, you will also see significant, continued growth in the area of
 data, particularly in services that already integrate voice over the Internet.
 The ability to add a data component to those offering voice over the Net could
 begin to emerge. Traditional carriers will also begin to move more forcefully
 into this arena, as video becomes a more important element of the telecom
 industry.
 
     Q. What key trends do you see on the horizon?
 
     The one-stop communications concept is still alive and well and continues
 to be used in order to give customers a single source for their communications
 needs. So many choices exist for customers, and finding a way to capture their
 undivided attention will be a challenge. Video and broadband could in some
 ways serve as the core of any bundling plan. Even though broadband technology
 has its skeptics, I still think it will prove to be a critical element of any
 one-stop source of communications needs. Additionally, these are the services
 of tomorrow, and are powerful elements in attracting a customer's attention
 and interest.
     Additionally, there could be more non-traditional mergers coming into
 light, as we saw with AOL-Time Warner or Vivendi and Universal. Companies will
 extend horizontally in order to build new sources of revenue and services that
 retain customers. Vertical pairings -- such as an RBOC and a long-distance
 leader -- will become more likely as market valuations offer great assets at
 value prices.
 
     Q. Who is best positioned to succeed in telecom in 2001?
 
     Those who realize that you can't be all things to all people will be
 closer to the mark of success. Those who focus on a core business and do it
 well are best positioned.  Again it seems that the RBOCs are currently in a
 good position. They have established businesses with positive cash flows and
 access to capital. Plus, they've spent a good deal of time focusing on the
 core business, which has given them a good base to build from.
     However, they are still regulated in many respects, so their hands are
 tied in what they can and cannot do in certain areas. Even with their prime
 position, they have some high hurdles to overcome in order to get into in any
 other lines of business.
 
 SOURCE  KPMG LLP