“New Network Technologies Transform Value Chains”

Lorenz Grehlich, Head of Technical Development at M-net Telekommunikations GmbH, is the new Leader of the Competence Group Networks at eco – Association of the  Internet Industry. In interview, he explains what his goals are with the  the group.


Mr. Grehlich, you have taken over the leadership of the Competence Group Networks at the eco Association – congratulations! How did this come about?

Thank you! I’m looking forward to the work as group leader. In conjunction with my work for M-net – which is a member of eco – I’ve had regular contact with the association over the years. Given that the position of Leader of the Competence Group Network was unoccupied, but the topic is close to my heart, I decided to take on the position after a short discussion with those in charge at the eco Association.

What are your first actions going to be as the new Competence Group Leader?

To bring the work of the Competence Group to life, I invite all members interested in collaborating to the Kick-off Meeting on 15 October on the M-net premises in Munich. There, we want to take the day to agree on what we want to achieve in the coming months, as well as touching on current industry topics in presentations and discussions.

Who in particular is the invitation relevant for?

All those that, in the broadest sense, build and/or operate networks, or are otherwise involved in them – so technical decision makers at ISPs and carriers, but also network suppliers and representatives from academia who are researching new network technologies – are warmly invited to participate in the meeting.

What topics will be in focus for this first meeting?

We want to cover concrete issues from daily practice, such as the implementation of regulatory requirements. Every network operator is interested to know how others deal with such issues. The German freedom of choice of routers, for example, was quite easy for the politicians to formulate – but what that means for us in the practical implementation is anything but trivial, and sharing ideas and experiences with other network operators is certainly sensible on such a topic.

Do you also want to have an outlook on the future?

Most definitely. In this body of experts, we want to look at where developments are potentially heading for fiber and 5G. What’s happening in next-generation technologies, and which access possibilities are winning the race? What’s coming after MPLS & Co. and how will software-defined networking (SDN) transform business concepts? For network operators like ISPs and carriers, there are a range of topics and challenges that make close coordination necessary.

So the sector is in flux?

Certainly. What does it mean for network operators when companies can use SD-WAN to relatively easily build up their own networks? And on the other side, how are carriers seizing their chance to use the new technologies to significantly expand their own networks relatively easily? A further big topic is also, for example, the outsourcing of network functions into the cloud. The value chains are transforming rapidly, and I want to discuss this with participants within the CG Networks.

What are your personal expectations of the CG Networks?

With the CG Networks, my goal is to create a platform in which decision makers can exchange information about network topics openly and honestly. To achieve this, of course I‘m hoping that many participants and interested parties will come to Munich on 15 October. I hope that we will find many topics that are very interesting for all participants, and that a lively discussion can be generated from which participants can take home lots of new ideas for daily business.

Mr Grehlich, many thanks for the interview!

“New Network Technologies Transform Value Chains”