Now that it has completed its acquisition of Level 3, CenturyLink has a deeper set of buildings connected with fiber and services, two factors that will enable the service providers to not only control spending, but also give customers more service and access options.
Jeff Storey, COO of CenturyLink, told investors during the UBS 45th Annual Global Media and Communications Conference that the expanded on-net footprint means that the service provider can better handle how it serves customers because more of them would be on their own network.
Each of the service providers on their own had sizable on-net footprints, but as a combined company, the capillarity of the networks is even bigger.
“We buy billions of dollars of off-net services from other companies,” Storey said. “If we can bring those customers on-net to the CenturyLink backbone, we not only save money but also control the customer experience end-to-end and do a better job of meeting our customer’s needs.”
Storey added that “we will focus in 2018 on making sure we’re serving our customers and integrate a better experience and lower cost structure.”
The acquisition of Level 3 increased CenturyLink’s on-net building reach by nearly 75% to approximately 100,000 buildings, including 10,000 buildings in EMEA and Latin America.
Additionally, CenturyLink gained an additional 200,000 route miles of fiber, including 64,000 route miles in 350 metropolitan areas and 33,000 subsea route miles connecting multiple continents.
Storey said that the greater scale of the larger company is going to differentiate it from other providers in the business segment.
“Having the breadth of the network of the combined businesses is much stronger than what each company had standalone,” Storey said. “If you look at Level 3, we bring 60 countries and deliver traffic to customers across the globe.”
Besides having a greater number of on-net buildings equipped, the combination of CenturyLink and Level 3 also enhances the product set.
Each of the service providers came to the table with various strengths. Level 3 had strong content delivery network (CDN) capabilities while CenturyLink had a more developed SD-WAN solution, for example.
“If you looked historically, Level 3 invested a lot in CDN and CenturyLink has not, which means we can take the CDN products to all of CenturyLink’s customers,” Storey said. “CenturyLink had invested more in SD-WAN, which we can now deliver to Level 3’s existing customers across the combined platform.”