In the latest Mid-2011 Global Provider Ethernet Leaderboard provided by Vertical Systems Group, the biggest change in the ranking is that Verizon (NYSE: VZ) made a large jump into second place, a feat it achieved through aggressive expansion efforts into various countries in Europe and the Asia Pacific region.
Leading the top three segment of the list were France Telecom's Orange (NYSE: FTE), Verizon and last year's number two-ranked Colt (Nasdaq: COLT), which fell into the third spot. Rounding out the third through sixth places on the list were NTT (NYSE: NTT), AT&T (NYSE: T) and Global Crossing (Nasdaq: GLBC).
Interestingly, the top three service providers on the Leaderboard--Orange, Verizon and Colt--are only separated by a port share differential of less than 2 percent in the retail Ethernet market.
Rosemary Cochran, co-founder and principal of Vertical Systems Group, told FierceTelecom that the market will continue to fluctuate since "there's a only few percentage points between the top three positions, meaning that an acquisition as seen in the U.S. with CenturyLink's acquisition of Qwest can move a provider up higher on the list."
Cochran says that there are two main trends when MNCs are choosing their global Ethernet provider: broad global reach, and Ethernet access to Layer 3 IP/MPLS VPNs.
"The one thing is that's making all of these companies stronger is the fact that they all offer Ethernet access to VPNs," she said. "Having that capability is particularly important when you look at the multinational corporation network."
No less important to the global Ethernet service equation is reach and presence. "If you're a multinational corporation and you can get service from a provider in almost every continent that's a big plus," Cochran said. "When you look at the top tier Orange, in particular, has done a good job with building out their network reach, while Colt has done that well mostly in Europe and Verizon has moved out further into Europe."
- see the release
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