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OpenPlanet’s mission is to be the independent partner of choice for any party seeking to bring into being, and to use or benefit from, an OPEN Public Local Access NETwork (OPLAN). OpenPlanet does not seek to own, control or operate OPLANs.

The two main constituencies with which OpenPlanet works are:

LOCAL COMMUNITIES

OpenPlanet works closely with local municipalities and communities that find themselves being led by a new generation of digitally engaged and inspired local elected political and community leaders – individuals ambitious and visionary for realizing the as yet unimagined potential for local community benefit afforded by the information age. To date, such communities are few and far between. But their number is steadily increasing around the world in both developed and emerging economies. These new, digitally inspired, local political leaders are, in effect, asking vital and disturbing questions:

"Is my community - its citizens, and its public and private institutions - gaining the maximum benefit and value that it can from the deployment of these new digital communication technologies - in particular optical fibre and cognitive radio?"

"Are these being openly deployed and operated within and across our community so as to deliver the maximum benefit to ‘US’ – rather than to some absent owner who, by being a service provider, tries to restrict how we use the infrastructure by forcing us to purchase ‘bundled services’ only from itself?"

"Why aren’t all the various constituencies within our community sufficiently connected so that they can freely innovate and discover how such abundant local open access bandwidth can stimulate and support new ways of enhancing and improving the way we live, work and play?"

OpenPlanet’s mission is to work alongside these communities, their leaders, and other local stakeholders who seek to scale the OPLAN summit of abundant open local access connectivity. Not only does OpenPlanet help map and execute the route to the summit, but it can use its independence and experience to overcome the many avalanches, crevasses and other obstacles that will inevitably mark the route. The journey may well span many years and is far from a stroll in the park. There are all too many cities that have made a quick dash for deploying their own ad-hoc fiber or ‘muni-wireless’, only to find that it does not lead to the true summit of pervasive open access with all the transformational socio-economic benefits that informed opinion now believes this '4th Utilty©' approach will yield.

INCUMBENT TELECOMS OPERATORS

OpenPlanet also works to assist incumbent telecoms operators to understand and explore the potential of the OPLAN business model to realise greater shareholder value. The assumption is that local exchange carriers, by embracing and accelerating the relentless march towards open public local access - rather than mindlessly resisting it - may well generate greater shareholder value than persisting with the conventional, vertically integrated business model. This has been the general policy of the sector for the past 25 years, since the move in the early 1980s towards the privatisation of what had been artificially created (invariably via nationalisation) as nationwide local access providers. Since then, incumbent local telecoms operators around the world have, almost without exception, used their political influence to shape public policy and sector specific regulation to try and extend the market life of the vertically integrated ‘service provider’, born out of their analogue past. At present, there are however a handful of such incumbent operators who, under enlightened management, are beginning to explore strategies for increasing shareholder value by embracing the OPLAN model. OpenPlanet is keen to assist and work with such visionary incumbent telecoms operators in helping them to transition the digital chasm safely and profitably.