BCE Takeover part 10
A couple of weeks ago our internet service went down at the firm. At some point during the evening a card was changed (“upgraded”) at Bell Canada’s Central Office and the card itself was faulty. So much for “Inspector #8”, or whomever sent Bell the card from the overseas EMS shop. Our team came to work to find their access to the outside universe a bit restricted. In the current world, this makes for a wasted day.
A few calls to Bell Canada, and a very nice technician showed up midday.
It took him hours to determine what the problem was, but that’s not the story here. In his efforts to solve the issue he needed to speak to over a dozen different Bell Canada staff. It was never quite clear who had responsibility for what, or who at the Central Office could go and check this or that. Often, he had to cajole a new name out of the person he was currently begging to help him solve our problem.
It got fixed, but he invested 6 hours in the job and we lost an entire business day.
If it was an airline, they’d give you a voucher or $ off your next flight. A restaurant would start with a free drink and then, maybe, comp you a dessert. While the techie couldn’t have been a better chap, his company doesn’t even seem to have the good sense to discount our monthly bill for the day of service that THEY DIDN’T PROVIDE.
When I think about the pending BCE (BCE:TSX) takeover, one can imagine how inefficient it is for over a dozen people to be involved in a SME service call. It was almost like the technician had to use charm to convince his colleagues to help him fix our problem. How complicated is the downtown Toronto Bell Canada operation that a simple problem requires over a dozen staff to “touch” the issue before it’s solved?
While Cerberus might agree with me about BCE CEO Michael Sabia being “one of the most intelligent and hard working people in any corner office in Canada“, you have to ask yourself this:
“How many PE shops can stand an inefficient operation?”
The laurel branch they threw his way yesterday makes sense, as Cerberbus is playing catch-up in the race to romance BCE management and the Board’s Special Committee. But it is hard to see it as any more than that. Being based in New York, Cerberus won’t have a lot of experience with Bell Canada as a business customer. So they’ll have no way of knowing that over a dozen people can be involved with a basic service call.
If they did, they might be a little less ready to pledge a “job for life” to the current BCE CEO, no matter how intelligent and hard working he is.
(I own BCE)