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Sunday, 7 April, 2002, 14:06 GMT 15:06 UK
BT to change direction
British Telecom is expected to reveal fresh plans for how to climb back into the black when it announces its latest strategic review on Monday.

Ben Verwaayen, BT chief executive
Mr Verwaayen wants to get back to basics
The telecoms giant's new chief executive, Ben Verwaayen, is expected to pull the group back from its global ambitions and instead push for tighter financial discipline and improved service levels.

Analysts predicted that BT is to ditch both any plans it might have had for major international acquisitions and any broadcasting ambitions it might have had.

Mr Verwaayen is not expected to wield the axe over BT's workforce as part of the review, though he has reduced the size of the group's executive committee from 16 to just five.

Return to mobiles

BT, which recently floated off its mobile telephone unit under the new name mmO2, is also expected to announce plans to return to the mobile phone market.

The return could include re-established links with mmO2 or with other mobile phone companies.

The idea could be to offer its own branded mobile phone network without owning its own mobile phone infrastructure, customer support network and billing facility.

These parts of the business could be contracted out to existing mobile phone firms.

Further moves to speed up the rolling out of broadband in the UK could also be announced.

This would follow BT's announcement in February of cuts to the cost of wholesale broadband access for internet service providers.

The BBC's Brian Milligan
"Ben Verwaayen's standing will be further boosted by this announcement"
See also:

26 Feb 02 | Business
BT cuts broadband charges
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