What’s Wrong With European Telecoms?

Europe is the pre-eminent place in the world for telecommunications R&D and development.

European telecommunications technologists are the best in the world.

So why is the European telecommunications industry shrinking and being taken over by foreign companies?


Nokia has laid off 14,000 people since 2010.


Infineon’s wireless division was sold off abroad.


ST-Ericsson has laid off over 2,500 people since being formed in 2008.


Alcatel-Lucent will lay off another 1,800 said the unions last week. The company has been sinking like a stone.


& so on.


Governments have been quite supportive. European telecoms R&D and engineering is without peer.


So what’s wrong?


It can’t be the entrepreneurially-minded, go-getting, risk-taking, inspirational, visionary top management of European telecoms companies.

Can it?



  1. I’m surprised there is no mention yet of the impending Mindspeed redundancies in Bath.

  2. Absolutely French, it was at the insistence of Nokia that ST merged its wireless IC operation with NXP’s wireless IC operation and Ericsson’s wireless IC operation. Then Nokia collapses – neatly engineering the wipe-out of the European wireless IC industry. It would be comical if it weren’t so tragic. It shows that these top European telecommunications executives just don’t have a clue how the real world works. They understand consolidation – any fool can do that – they don’t understand motivation, engineering and markets.

  3. “Perhaps the owners of the mentioned companies mistake management with an abundance of managers?”
    Now that’s a classic one !

  4. Most managers are more bothered about their next job and the size of their next wage packet. Don’t trust them to do anything for the customers, employees or shareholders!

  5. I believe that being mono-customer mided doesn’t help when the customer crashes.

  6. Spot on, Bitter, this was so much a ‘jobs for the boys’ industry. You were never going to get anyone of any quality running things.

  7. My guess is that it is the old Euro-Socialist mentality that is to blame here as well.
    If you want some influence and money in the Party, then you must intrigue your way up.

  8. Sounds about right, Bitter, from what I hear.

  9. Perhaps the owners of the mentioned companies mistake management with an abundance of managers?
    Speaking for ST-E in Lund, basically the only way to increase your salary and influence is to drop the engineering and start upping the BS, .xls and .ppt skills.
    This is ok for the more mediocre engineers. The good ones unfortunately leaves. Which is probably why the customers are too?

  10. Soooo sarcastic.

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