With over 120 years of experience in telecommunications, Kymen Puhelin Oy (KYMP) has a respected history of expertise in its field. Telecommunications is today a rapidly evolving sector, however, with new technologies in continual development and old technologies made quickly redundant. KYMP has maintained its reputation by being on the cutting edge of this evolution whilst offering solid service to its customers.
Established in Kotka, southern Finland, the company also has offices in Kouvola, Lappeenranta, Imatra and Porvoo. It serves an area of 11, 000 square kilometres and a population of 365,000 many of whom are KYMP customers. Reima Blomqvist is the managing director of KYMP and the last time he talked to ESCM he described what was available to the company’s customers: “The services we offer are very varied, and range from telephony and data communication services, to the distribution of telecommunication equipment. We also provide IT services and document handling systems, and whilst we only cover a relatively small geographical area in Finland, we are the leading provider in this location.”
In 2009 KYMP increased its consumer sales turnover from the previous year by nearly 800,000 euros, or seven per cent, with a total annual turnover of 40 million euros. This success has placed the company in a strong position for 2010. Whilst continuing to improve its customer service and solution selling, there will be a focus on rolling out new fibre optic cables and advanced television services. Part of this initiative is the marketing of complete IT, TV and communication packages to new housing developments.
The company is not limited to offering line-based services however. At the end of 2009 the company received a share of 4G WiMAX, the next generation of mobile internet that succeeds current 3G services. It is expected this service will enable very fast connections in the future, and KYMP will be at the forefront of its provision.
KYMP is part of a larger network of companies called Finnet, a telecommunications group consisting of 26 locally operating companies across the south of Finland. This association is a trade and political interest group aiming to protect the interests of its subsidiaries nationally and internationally. By bringing these telephone companies together it also actively participates in the development of a pan-Finnish communications network and information society.
One of the most recent developments Finnet has implemented is the Supermatrix Project. A ten-year plan was launched in April 2009 to revolutionise the way telecommunication operates in Finland. A one billion euro investment will be made in bringing 100 megabits and faster connections to homes and business throughout the country, opening a world of virtual desktops and streaming high definition TV (HDTV) to the population. By creating a new decentralised matrix structure, the network will become more efficient and tolerant of faults therefore alleviating the current bottlenecks that litter the internet.
Speaking in a Finnet press release, Timo Simula of the Supermatrix Project illustrates how this will benefit customers with the example of Internet Protocol TV (IPTV): “IPTV is the fastest growing internet application. The audience is moving away from watching broadcasts into watching programmes in their own time and pace. According to the VTT study, 1000 simultaneous HDTV watchers can be enough to block the national trunk network. The demand is however many thousandfold.” This project is a huge undertaking involving more than 40 companies both Finnish and international, including major technology figures such as Intel, IBM and SUN Microsystems. Further investment is provided by TEKES, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation.
Supermatrix Project and 4G are all part of the evolving demands of the market that KYMP and its partners strive to meet. Reima reflects on this need to stay one step ahead: “This is an industry where technology is forever changing, and there are always new products on the market. We therefore have to ensure that we stay on the edge of this rapid development – which we do by continually developing our supplier base. Whilst we work with our current suppliers both nationally and internationally, we also ensure that our supply network is constantly growing as new companies and fresh products enter the market.”
A new law passed on the 1st July 2010 by the Finnish Government makes broadband access a required part of every permanent residence, much like telephone and postal services. With this in mind the advances that KYMP and Finnet are leading will become increasingly central to the population. After an unpredictable period of economic decline, which saw KYMP restructure its business model to create cheaper alternatives and monthly payment options, the company is once more on an upswing and looking to share its technological advances with its customers.
Reima concludes with an insight into what the future holds for the company: “I believe that the technology and internet-based solutions that we provide are going to become increasingly more prominent in the coming years. As the market for basic telephony declines, we need to continue to develop our offerings in the internet sector in order to uphold our strong market position, and remain successful for another 125 years.”
Kymen Puhelin Oy