Mechelen, 18 June 2020 - Micha Berger, Telenet's CTO, has been awarded as 'CTO of the Year'. The 'Mobile Europe & European Communications CTO of the Year Award 2020: Trailblazer. Sponsored by MYCOM OSI' was awarded by Mobile Europe & European Communications during an online event. Amongst other projects, Micha was mainly honoured for the ambitious GIGA network, which was completed in 2019 and will enable gigantic speeds in Flanders and Brussels, Europe's largest GIGA Internet region.
The 'CTO of the Year' award is a prestigious award in the telecom landscape, because it honours the best CTO in the whole of Europe. The organisation is done by Mobile Europe & European Communications, the leading B2B magazine for the telecom industry. Two CTO's of the year were selected: the best 'Gamechanger' and 'Trailblazer'. The CTO if Telenet won the Trailblazer award for his groundbreaking ideas about the future telecom world.
Progressive network strategy
The jury honoured Micha Berger for his progressive networking strategy. For example, in 2015 he was at the cradle of the 'Grote Netwerf', Telenet's ambitious investment programme in which the capacity of the fixed network was increased from 600 MHz to 1 Ghz and data download speeds of up to 1 Gbps became possible. This project was successfully completed in September 2019 under the name GIGA internet. By extending the fixed network to more than 3 million connectable homes and businesses in Flanders and Brussels, Telenet is creating Europe's largest GIGA internet region, an engine for innovation and socio-economic growth.
In addition, under the wings of Micha Berger, Telenet has upgraded and modernized BASE's mobile network infrastructure acquired in 2016. The upgrade of the mobile network - an investment of €250.0 million and supported by technology partners - was completed in 2018 and led to increased speed and quality of the mobile network. The company continues its network investments with an important focus on spectrum acquisition and the roll-out of 5G throughout Belgium. Telenet has recently acquired a temporary 5G license and the Technology & Innovation team has conducted initial 5G network tests that show promising results at speeds above 3 Gbps.
Stimulating a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship
Micha Berger promotes a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation throughout his organization. He promotes an innovation mentality and actively supports innovation projects that can generate new value for the customer, such as Tadaam. This proposition was launched in 2019 by a group of Telenet technicians driven by the ambition to "connect home internet and TV via mobile networks, without cables, tires or technicians". The TADAAM team received full support from Micha Berger in the development of the technology solution and business model.
He is also one of the driving forces behind the 'Academy for Digital & Data Talent', which was founded by Telenet together with KU Leuven, VUB, ULB and the programming school BeCode. Through this partnership Telenet wants to strengthen the digital knowledge and technical skills of its own employees through training, further education or retraining.
"On behalf of the entire Leadership team, I'm very proud of this recognition. In recent years Micha has built up a team that is armed to respond effectively to increased customer expectations and rapidly changing market expectations. Micha Berger's people leadership skills have helped make this a success," says John Porter, CEO Telenet.
In 2016 and 2017, following the acquisitions of BASE Company and SFR Belgium, Micha Berger formed the integration of the network infrastructure teams of Telenet, BASE and SFR into a single organisation. In 2018 he took the lead in setting up Unit-T, a joint venture between Telenet and Solutions 30, focused on field services, with the ambition to offer value-added services in the field of IoT, smart cities and smart homes. Through the creation of the joint venture, the field services teams are able to deliver more flexibility and broader expertise to the client.
About Micha Berger
Micha Berger (°1970) joined the Telenet Group in July 2013 and as Chief Technology Officer leads the Technology & Inovation team. He directs various programs to remain the leading provider of superior connectivity to a converged fixed and mobile network. Micha Berger is a member of the Senior Leadership team and reports directly to the CEO of the company. He is a strong supporter of Telenet's largest digital transformation program that will bring new ways of working to everyone in the company and improve the customer experience. He is committed to integrating and launching the new flexible and advanced IT platform.
Micha Berger has been working for Liberty Global since 2006, initially leading the Engineering Department of UPC Netherlands. As Vice President at Liberty Global, he was responsible for the development of Horizon Next Generation digital TV and product deployment since 2010. Prior to that, he gained his first experience in the cable industry at HOT Israel, where his responsibilities included the development of the interactive digital service platform and the rollout of video on demand.