Brazil’s Telecoms to Grow Rapidly

SAO PAULO — According to Frost & Sullivan, a positive economic outlook as well as investments in multiple-play bundles and 3G mobile network expansions have given a huge boost to the Brazilian telecommunications services market.

Analysis of the Brazilian Total Telecommunications Services Market, finds that the market earned revenues of $66.15 billion in 2010 and estimates this to reach $97.64 billion in 2016.

Brazil has been languishing behind most other Latin American countries in terms of household penetration of fixed broadband services and pay TV services, as well as mobile data services revenues. However, all this is set to change with operators recognizing an opportunity to increase service adoption through lower-priced services and multiple-play offerings.

The increasing coverage of alternate telecommunications networks will enhance penetration among low-income users and even in distant geographic areas, including small- and medium-sized cities.

Although the Brazilian mobile services market could be considered saturated after it surpassed 108 percent in penetration in 2010, the prevalence of multiple SIM cards, mobile to mobile (M2M) services, mobile broadband, mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs), and the emergence of a social middle class are likely to help the market grow further.

“Another important factor that will accelerate the penetration of telecommunications services is the intensifying competition brought on by the deregulation of the cable TV market in Brazil,” said Frost & Sullivan Industry Analyst Renato Pasquini.

“This escalating rivalry among integrated participants to provide convergent services, the entrance of telecom companies in the pay TV market, and the rise in the number of cities with coverage overlap of different fixed and mobile networks are all expected to take the market to the next level of competitiveness.”

The offer of converged services by integrated companies will particularly enhance the penetration rates of fixed broadband services, pay TV services, and mobile data services usage. On the other hand, the lack of competition in remote areas and small cities, the high tax burden, and regulators’ delay in taking important decisions related to spectrum auctions and competitive remedies could hold the market back.

To resolve these issues, the government has to ensure the implementation of the National Broadband Plan. This plan can coordinate public policies with Brazilian National Telecommunications Agency (ANATEL) and reduce the tax burden on equipment as well as network elements and services.

In the current scenario, telecommunications operators have to negotiate with each other, utilities, road concessionaires, and the government to find ways to minimize the costs and red tape for infrastructure deployment.

However, the recent change in the regulatory framework for pay TV services in Brazil unite the regulations for the different pay TV technologies (Cable TV, direct to home (DTH), microwave multipoint distribution service (MMDS), and internet protocol television (IPTV)) and will allow telecom companies to offer cable TV/IPTV in their concession regions. This will not only enable them to offer convergent services at competitive rates, but also stimulate investments in fiber and cable networks.

“Most telecom companies have announced voluntarily agreements to offer popular broadband services in their footprint, which is expected to drive service adoption,” said Pasquini. “Nevertheless, the increasing penetration of smart devices, and the resulting data traffic growth, is spawning challenges related to the quality of service and return on investment for operators.”

Over-the-top and Internet neutrality are likely to be main issues in this complex scenario. These challenges can be assuaged to some extent by network upgrades to high-speed packet access (HSPA+) and long-term evolution (LTE). Mobile data services adoption will also surge with the extended coverage of mobile broadband networks to serve more than 90 percent of the population.

Are you keeping an eye on the Brazilian telecoms market? 

SOURCE :–sullivan-market-consolidation-into-major-telco-groups-in-brazil-to-drive-competition-nationwide-162054985.html


London City Brand: Wins Medal at Olympics

London Eye


Well done to London. London the City outperformed expectations in hosting the Olympics, and the hyper-critical British press.

As a city brand London created a memorable opening ceremony. More importantly they landscaped the games as if it was a giant video game set. London looked modern, it looked dynamic, and the people appeared more relaxed and friendly.

The video game element was visible in the spectacle of the marathon and cycling events. Even traditional Eton’s rowing seemed to assuming a glowing hue as a film set.

It seemed a more 21st century video game like London — and a viable mix of tradition and modern.

Of course image only gets you so far. Image for cities is City Brand.

And London City Brand won a medal this Olympics. Was it Silver, Gold or Bronze

And, how much will the image boost redefine London’s innovation economy?

Keep Innovating!™



Top 10 Cities of 2012 Where Residents Appear Older Than They Really Are

IRVINE,California – There’s old, and appearing to be old. At least until some bright spark invents a real gene-based fountain of youth.

In a bit of interesting ‘survey fun’, the Patient’s Guide (billed as a leading online destination in beauty and skin care), released the top U.S. cities where the average population appears “older than they really are.”

i.e. People who have ‘aged’ prematurely. Florida, anyone?

So who tops this list and how was it done?

To determine these rankings, The Patient’s Guide conducted a study that pulled data from internal analytics, Google’s Regional Interest, as well as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Listed below are the top ten U.S. cities whose residents struggle with physical signs of premature aging including sun spots and wrinkles.

  1. Los Angeles, CA
  2. Miami, FL
  3. St. Petersburg, FL
  4. Phoenix, AZ
  5. Houston, TX
  6. San Francisco, CA
  7. Orlando, FL
  8. New Orleans, LA
  9. Charleston, SC
  10. Jersey City, NJ

“Up to 90 percent of the visible skin changes commonly attributed to aging are caused by the sun,” says Dr. Eric Bernstein, distinguished practitioner and innovator in the field of dermatology and laser surgery. “Depending on where you live, you may need to adjust your skin care regimen’s level of daily sunscreen and increase treatments such as non-ablative laser skin rejuvenation or citric acid peels to treat the five signs of skin aging.”

People who live or work near to the equator, at higher altitudes, and in locations with many dry, sunny days have a higher risk of UV exposure, skin aging and even cancer.

top ten cities where people look oldest
Courtesy of:

Ironically, the leading cities in the study happen to be highly populated, metropolitan areas that are known for their emphasis on beauty and fashion.

People who live or work near to the equator, at higher altitudes, and in locations with many dry, sunny days have a higher risk of UV exposure, skin aging and even cancer.

Jasson Gilmore, The Patient’s Guide’s CEO and co-founder said, “It comes as no surprise that most of the cities in the top ten for aging skin are in the southern portion of the US. The residents of these cities are fortunate to bask in the sun’s rays most days of the year; however this comes at a high price. Risk of skin cancer and premature aging run high in these areas.”

“This study should remind everyone to wear their sunscreen, especially during the summer when we are outdoors more.”

Interesting and fun no?

Creative Start-Ups Drive Mobile Payment Revolution

Amsterdam — Smartphones are becoming trending payment devices in a world in which 87% of the population owns a mobile phone. The fact that mobile penetration and access to financial services play a major role in this process has been extensively surveyed, but there are other factors which contribute to a future in which cash is mobile.

The mobile payment revolution has been initiated by giant telecom operators and hardware providers in joint ventures, as well as nimble innovators.

Payvision, Payment Solutions Provider specialized in Global Card Processing for the e-Commerce market, recently explored the mobile payments industry (or m-Commerce) from a variety of angles.

According to the report, security concerns form an obstacle for massive customer acceptance, concerns which may be solved when mobile payment solutions are driven by financial institutions, banks and/or credit card companies. Although all eyes are on the giants, Payvision expects that heavily funded innovative start-ups will drive this mobile payments revolution into the next phase, in alliance with financial institutions and global acquirers.

Whether Industry giants or small creative startup, key players will have to understand the great differences in regional consumer needs, concerns and user expectations, subjects which Payvision has researched and happy to share with all those interested in this shifting mobile payments landscape.

You can read Payvision’s Report here — as they have explored the different m-payment methods, the great challenges stakeholders face to mitigate risk and to overcome regional differences in order to gain consumer acceptance.

They have also highlighted some innovative agile startups in a payment industry with great promises in a bright future without boundaries.



Canadians who buy lunch spend $8.80 on average

TORONTO – While some Canadians seek out low-cost alternatives for lunch, many are spending hundreds of dollars a year on their midday meal, a new survey by Visa Canada confirms.

“Sixty percent of Canadians surveyed reported they buy their lunch once or more a week, an expense that can add up over the course of a year. With a little understanding of budgeting and a lot more brown bags in their briefcases when they head out the door each morning, it is easy to trim this unnecessary and costly expense,” says Melissa Cassar, head of corporate and public affairs at Visa Canada.

The survey reveals that the majority of Canadians who buy lunch – 61 percent – are spending between $7.00 and $13.00, while nine percent are spending between $14.00 and $25.00. Regularly dining out for lunch at these prices can significantly affect the budgets of Canadians, no matter what their income level.

“If you think about a brown bagged lunch costing about $2 to $3 per day, compared with this survey’s national average of $8.80 for those who buy their lunch, getting into the habit of spending an extra ten minutes each day preparing a sandwich or packing leftovers will put more money back in your pocket every week,” says Cassar.

Other findings from the survey include:

  • Ontarian’s eat out for lunch most frequently. Twenty per cent eat out three or more days per week, compared to the national average of 15 per cent who eat out at the same frequency. Only 34 percent of Ontarians never eat out for lunch.
  • More Quebec residents bring brown bags to work than any other Canadians – a full 50 percent pack a lunch every day, followed closely by Albertans (43 percent) and then British Columbians (39 percent).
  • Men spend more on lunch than women, forking out an average of $9.30 vs. $8.30, respectively. Men also eat out for lunch more frequently (average of 1.3 times per week) compared to women (average of once per week).
  • Young Canadians (aged 18 – 34) who eat out for lunch do so 2.3 times per week.

Innovation agency 2thinknow compile comparative lunch prices on all cities worldwide as a means of measuring wage support and destination attractivness for innovation-creating workers.

In commenting on this survey, Executive Director of 2thinknow, Christopher Hire, said “Canadian cities offer more food choices than equivalent U.S. cities in some cases. This can attract knowledge and creative workers to these locations in cities like Quebec and Toronto. Culture is critical in idea generation and creative phase of start-ups and the innovation economy.”

However what is most important is options. “One of the most telling findings of this survey was that 30 percent of Canadians plan on spending less on lunch this year. Corrective measures like brown bagging create real savings,” says Cassar, “and they are as easy as pie – the one you make at home rather than the slice you buy at the coffee shop.”




Euro & World Markets to Grow Slow without Innovation

NEW YORK, LONDON and SYDNEY — In 3Q (Quarter 3) 2012, analysts expect worldwide economic growth to stall due to the EU still having some way to go to sort out its sovereign debt crisis and with the US facing a presidential election in November and a fiscal cliff at the beginning of next year.

In 2Q it briefly looked as if the economic recovery was picking up steam but progress has been halted by a resurgence of tensions in Europe and government driven austerity programmes impacting growth.

The retail division of GAIN Capital (NYSE:GCAP), a global provider of online trading services, today released its 3Q Market Outlook report. The report focuses on what to expect in Europe following the EU Summit at the end of last month and the possible implications this has for the wider global economy. It also includes an in depth view of’s currency forecasts for the quarter, along with an outlook for commodities and stock markets globally.

“Volatility has started to pick up as we head into the second half of the year. The Eurozone remains a threat to financial markets, the US economy is starting to weaken and the major global central banks have embarked on looser monetary policies. This may weigh on the Euro this quarter and, correspondingly, be positive for the Dollar,” said Kathleen Brooks, Research Director,

Commenting on the report from an innovation view, Christopher Hire, Executive Director of 2thinknow (Disclosure: innovation agency, and publisher of this journal) commented: “European crisis is showing some signs of easing — but growth will be anemic — unless we all embrace the innovation economy.”

“The U.S. economy is creating innovation in our models, and European cities are also — as well as some in Asia. But the challenge is ensuring the innovation economy gathers pace, and we have the innovation skills and training for the new innovation economy.”

“Innovation is key — business as usual will kill growth. look to 3D manufacturing and new start-ups like Sweden’s Spotify or Boston’s inCXO for excitement,” Hire said.

Ms. Brooks added: “Key event risks to watch for this quarter include Dutch elections in September, the US fiscal cliff and the Federal Reserve meeting at the end of July/beginning of August – where we may find out if the Fed joins the ECB, BOE and PBOC in China in boosting its monetary stimulus or if it decides to ride the economic storm alone. If we continue to see soft economic data we may find ourselves in a risk averse environment for some time as the focus shifts back to global growth.”

Other expectations from the 3Q 2012 Markets Outlook include:

  • European stocks may outperform US equities as the US economy starts to slow.
  • The People’s Bank of China is likely to ease rates further, which may cushion its economy from the global economic slowdown.
  • In Australia: expect one 25 bps rate cut and a predicted GDP growth rate of around 1.6%, which will likely lead to a stronger Australian dollar versus the euro, US dollar and British pound.
  • It could be a tough quarter for oil as both supply and demand issues limit potential gains.
  • Gold is at risk of a decline in the current deflationary environment as growth slows around the world.

The Markets Outlook report highlights potential price ranges for key pairs, such as EUR/USD, GBP/USD, USD/JPY, USD/CHF, and AUD/USD. Key cross currency pairs like EUR/JPY and EUR/GBP are also covered. The report was prepared by Research Director Kathleen Brooks, Senior Technical Strategists Chris Tevere, CMT, Eric Viloria, CMT, and Research Analyst Chris Tedder. The full report is available at under “Research”.



World’s Best Bartenders Bring New Mixes to Rio

RIO DE JANEIRO – With a strong Asia Pacific and European contingent, the finalists include:

  • Australia, Tim Philips
  • Belgium, Olivier Jacobs
  • China, Tree Mao
  • Denmark, Kaspar Riewe Henriksen
  • Great Britain, Andy Mil
  • Italy, Dennis Zoppi
  • Japan, Shigeki Yoshida
  • Lebanon, Varia Dellalian
  • Netherlands, Fjalar Goud
  • Singapore, Aki Eguchi
  • Spain, Guiseppe Santamaria
  • Taiwan, Kae Yin
  • Thailand, Supawit Muttarattana
  • Trinidad, Stephon Scott
  • UAE, Jimmy Barrat
  • USA, Ricky Gomez

Follow the competition on Facebook For live updates on Twitter follow @WorldClassLive and join the conversation with #WCRio; or, follow our boards at

Challenges at the Diageo Reserve World Class Global Final are judged by the industry’s leading gurus and require bartenders to explore fast growing industry trends, with a particular focus on Retro Chic, a global luxury trend encapsulating the glamour and simplicity of the golden era of 50s and 60s.

Rudy Paoli, Managing Director Global Reserve: “Diageo Reserve World Class is a leader that collaborates with the industry’s finest to continually elevate the craft of bartending. This week in Rio we have seen an unprecedented level of creativity against a backdrop of international events. The Diageo Reserve World Class finalists are truly transforming fine drinking culture with their innovation and trend setting Retro Chic serves.”

Attendees at the landmark week include global trendsetters Dylan Jones, GQ, Piers Adams, Mahiki, Tony Chambers, Wallpaper*, Jason Beckley, Dunhill and  Mark Izzat, Vertu. Glamorous evening events have featured celebrity guests and entertainment – including Bossa Nova legend Bebel Gilberto – and a Mahiki Rio partnership with CÎROC vodka – introducing the world’s first pop up bar at the Copa Club.  Later in the week a very special Johnnie Walker Blue Blended Scotch Whisky event will be hosted by Christina Hendricks.

Over the next two days the top 16 finalists will compete through an additional elimination round, leaving just eight global finalists who aspire to be crowned Diageo Reserve World Class Bartender of the Year 2012 on 12 July.



Book Review: Wanted: New Business Models!

BMIF: Saul Kaplan: Business Model Innovation

Why we need new business models, and ideas on how to get started.

Saul Kaplan’s book, the Business Model Innovation Factory, is a book that sets out the rationale and paths to new models of innovation. Saul Kaplan runs the Business Innovation Factory in Rhode Island, writes for HBR and Fortune on innovation, consults and hosts popular BIF innovation events.

Whilst innovation is often defined as a new product or process,in today’s world it is often a new combination of processes — to form a new entity, project or program. So systems level thinking is critical, it’s what Saul argues, and what we at 2thinknow believe and model. So Saul and 2thinknow are very much on the same page on the diagnosis.

In some cases, as Kaplan argues, for existing innovators it can be the recombination of existing factors inside an organization such as Accenture (Kaplan’s former employer and point of personal reference) that creates innovation.

For new innovators, it would be a disruptive business model (e.g. Spotify now for music, or Apple for phones), that disrupts industries and creates the rapid growth opportunities. Saul gives A Better Place as a long form example.

2thinknow have an alternate model to Saul, but there’s alignment between our Innovation Development LifeCycle/HI Loop and Saul’s Connect, Inspire and Transform model.

Christopher Hire, Executive Director of 2thinknow said, “Saul and I agree. We need innovation, and change. Those trying to change existing organizations should really dig in to Saul’s book and find the courage to lead new creative change in companies and organizations, by business model design.

“Saul is one of those well known in the innovation space, and a real encourager of new and knowledge-based innovation eco-systems, and I think Saul has stepped into the breach in sharing his vision of business model innovation for those trying to enact change inside the walls.”

Daniel Pink, author, and writer of the HBR Article on how MFAs are the new MBAs (a @2thinknow favorite) said “Saul knows how to take innovation from napkin sketch to market share.”

Our Verdict:

Saul’s book, like some of Alex Osterwalder’s thinking, sets out the need for new business models.

The primary driver of innovation are new models, new approaches, new processes and systems.

Who Should Read: Innovation Professionals, Business and Government. Those with strategic responsibility either in their own business, or in the departmental/executive function of a larger business.

Not for Profits should dig into Chapter 10, then the rest.

Must Read Chapters: 4, 5, and 6 for the how-to starter tips.

Sleeper Chapter: Lookout for Chapter 7 for nuts and bolts thinking about Business Model Innovation.

Available: in the Innovation Bookstore fulfilled by Amazon as Kindle or Print *, try this direct Amazon link or order from your local bookstore to support local booksellers.

Contact the Author: Saul Kaplan on Twitter

Disclosure: Saul’s organization sent us a review copy via mail.

Transport Safety: Is the TSA Money Well Spent?

One of the things we at 2thinknow learnt (and now teach) in researching and applying innovation is:

Agreeing a problem is not the same as agreeing a solution.

So that’s why we were interested in one readers submissions. Tony Shin’s editorial submission of an infographic on the USA TSA, who are tasked with ensuring all Americans fly safe.

TSA Waste
Created by:

(Note: we have reproduced ‘as is’, so this is not tied to our research data programs)

It’s a nice looking graphic, and makes a neat point.

Like many government agencies the TSA got lots of taxpayer money post 9/11.

So the query is, does the TSA have the right solution mix and expenditure on solutions to agreed problems? (Hint our answer is: it’s sub-optimal, could be better).

What do you think?

The 2thinknow Innovation Development LifeCycle (IDLC), produces an answer to this question. The IDLC explains the transition of idea conception to evaluation to implementation with the aim of optimising the outcome, using the latest innovation thinking and data. 2thinknow applies cutting edge innovation, and was the world’s first innovation agency established 2006.

Ranking the best credit card processors

Independent rating site has released their ranking list using real consumer feedback scores of the best payment processing companies of 2012.

“Real consumers are the best deciders of which company is best,” said Greg Wong, site representative.

Each of the credit card processors has been subjected to analysis focusing on factors critical to accepting credit card payments successfully. The 10 top companies actual customers chose for the list are considered as offering industry leading services.

The credit card processors in contention and compared in the survey include:

1) iTransact
2) Total Merchant Solutions
3) MerchantPlus
4) Merchant Warehouse
5) Flagship Merchant Services

Additionally, the site provides customers a means of providing a feedback survey of experiences and the results determine the top companies each month based on satisfaction and rates.

Real users are encouraged to share their evaluation of their current merchant service provider on matters such as:

  • Customer Service
  • Fee Competitiveness
  • Ease of Use
  • Reliable Security
  • Comprehensive Support

The company doing the survey does not accept advertising from the processing services companies which allows them to continue to provide fair and unbiased report and ratings direct from real customer feedback.

Real consumers share what they encounter in order to help new business owners find the best credit card processing companies available. For more information on the rankings visit