US Telecom Industry CEO Outlook | KPMG | BM
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US Telecom Industry CEO Outlook

US Telecom Industry CEO Outlook

Telecom CEOs face a number of formidable challenges in addition to juggling a long list of strategic priorities competing for their attention.


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In this evolving and complex business environment, telecom CEOs face a number of formidable challenges in addition to juggling a long list of strategic priorities competing for their attention. These disruptions will challenge telecoms to transform their business and operating models, and CEOs must determine how to differentiate and move beyond established strategies to thrive in a rapidly changing environment, and ensure their companies are well-situated to meet these challenges.

Survey results for KPMG’s U.S. Telecom CEO Outlook—Telecom Disrupted: the CEO Challenge are broken out into key focus areas including Data & Analytics, Innovation and Disruptive Technology, Cybersecurity, and Mergers & Acquisitions.

  • Telecoms are using Data & Analytics in a number of important business areas: strategy and change, developing new products, and managing services. But telecom CEOs expressed misgivings about their organizations’ ability to use D&A for gauging customer behavior, a critical measurement for driving growth.
  • Innovation is on the minds of telecom CEOs, but many are struggling with integrating innovation into their company’s culture. Nearly half said that their approach to innovation was “ad hoc” or siloed. At the same time, they are dealing with disruption—in some cases, deploying new technologies to better engage with customers, increase sales, and improve products and services; in others, reacting to external forces that are rapidly changing the market.
  • Reports of data breaches keep cyber security top of mind for telecom CEOs. But many seem to be coming to the viewpoint that cyber threats are not something to be feared but a risk to be managed. Nearly all believe their organizations are somewhat prepared for a cyber attack, yet they see taking steps to further minimize cyber risk a less-than-urgent priority.
  • Telecom CEOs expect to be actively pursuing mergers and acquisitions. The targets will be companies that support the telecom’s strategic priorities, such as speed to market, geographic expansion, and diversification into new businesses. Telecoms will also look to acquire emerging technologies, either by outright purchase or through partnerships or alliances.

© 2019 KPMG, a group of Bermuda limited liability companies which are member firms of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. All rights reserved.

KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”) is a Swiss entity.  Member firms of the KPMG network of independent firms are affiliated with KPMG International. KPMG International provides no client services. No member firm has any authority to obligate or bind KPMG International or any other member firm vis-à-vis third parties, nor does KPMG International have any such authority to obligate or bind any member firm.


The information contained herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation.

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