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Operators must focus on partnerships, not acquisitions, in telematics

In a bid to augment their IoT revenues, several operators adjusted their telematics strategies in 2019: in April, Verizon underwent a reorganisation that included its telematics business, Verizon Connect; in August, BT sold its fleet-management arm, BT Fleet Solutions; and in September, Vodafone partnered with Geotab, a telematics provider, to enhance its Vodafone Automotive proposition. Verizon and Vodafone have both built their telematics businesses through acquisitions, but after an initial boost in IoT revenue growth, momentum has slowed. To accelerate telematics revenue growth, most operators will need to focus on partnerships as opposed to acquisitions. In many cases, operators have been outcompeted by specialists in this space, but they can still bring buying power, customer scale and networking assets – including 5G – to the table.

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