Telenet Group supplies cable broadband, television, fixed line, and mobile phone services to customers across Belgium. As it pursues a new strategy to shift from connectivity to complete customer centricity, Telenet has found the simple, scalable, and collaborative data platform it needs to drive higher levels of personalization in Snowflake’s Data Cloud.
Between its Telenet, Base, and Telenet Business brands, Telenet Group is the largest provider of cable broadband services in Belgium, offering cable television and fixed line and mobile phone services.
But its connectivity solutions are just the start of an ambitious group strategy. “We aim to move from connectivity to complete customer-centricity,” explained Kim Smets, VP Data and Analytics at Telenet Group. “Data is the engine and the fuel that drives this strategy forward.”
Telenet delivers the right message to the right person at the right time
The group’s customer-centric strategy applies across multiple parts of its operations. Its marketing and communications will become hyperpersonalized, its service and support proactive and tailored to each customer’s needs, and new infrastructure rollouts planned according to granular user and technical data.
“In the past, our legacy platform was great for looking backward and reporting on things retroactively,” Smets said. “But we needed a new platform to help us look forward and achieve our new ambitions: something that could scale, help us accelerate time to market, reduce costs, and attract the best talent. Snowflake, in collaboration with AWS, fulfilled all those requirements.”
A forward-thinking platform and a common vision for the future of data
“We began looking to the cloud for a more scalable data solution,” said Pieter-Jan Verbruggen, Telenet’s Product Owner Data and Analytics Platform. “We compared Snowflake to other platforms. For analytical database capabilities, Snowflake came out strongest, but there were two other major areas where we felt the Data Cloud matched our strategy well.”
Ability to execute was one of the biggest draws for Telenet. For example, with its ambition to personalize service to a ‘segment of one’, Telenet needed to get timely data and insights into granular customer demographics. “Competing solutions didn’t decouple storage and compute natively like Snowflake,” said Verbruggen. “That was huge for us, as it meant we could be more flexible in how and when we process data to achieve the speed we needed.”
The second reason was the alignment of vision between Snowflake and Telenet. “We’ve really appreciated the way Snowflake has worked with us, and how they approach their platform,” said Verbruggen. “Their view of the world is also the same as ours. Snowflake understands the impact data has on society and is expanding its platform to support evolving data use cases—in the same way, we’re evolving our own data platform to serve customers in a more personalized way.”
Telenet encourages innovation with a simpler, faster data infrastructure
As Telenet migrates its data estate to Snowflake’s Data Cloud, it already has plans to unify its data estate and offer employees a single serving layer for all data.
“We deployed a traditional data warehouse and Hadoop setup at different times,” explained Verbruggen. “This led to silos where we’d have to duplicate data between systems, with no single place for teams to get insights.”
“With a cloud system like Snowflake, it’s easy for our data-savvy people to test new ideas and experiment with SQL,” said Verbruggen. “And with Snowflake adding new features like Snowpark and Unistore, analysts get better tools to take their derived insights to a next level.”
This new speed of development isn’t just about empowering internal teams. It also has a profound impact on the customer experience and Telenet’s customer-centric goals. With faster time to market, Telenet is confident it can deliver internal applications that power its customer-centric vision faster.
“Our current system can’t scale or accelerate without potentially affecting production environments,” said Verbruggen. “With Snowflake, we’ll get the speed we need and become driven by data. Then, we can achieve our goals of higher customer satisfaction and zero voluntary customer churn.”
A technical and business transformation through data
As Telenet offers TV services to customers, it already works with its broadcasting partners to share aggregated viewing insights on 1.8 million customers compliant with GDPR and customer consent. With Snowflake’s collaboration features, this will be even easier and more secure.
And with Telenet Group recently announcing a new joint venture with utilities group Fluvius to provide new services like fiber-to-the-home technology, Snowflake’s data collaboration features will only become more important to securely exchange data between enterprises.
“As we work alongside our networking and broadcast partners, collaboration will become essential,” said Smets. “Snowflake has great data collaboration capabilities, so we’re keen to make the most of these to share data efficiently and securely.”
The future looks bright for Telenet’s collaborations with broadcasters and the new joint venture with Fluvius, and for the partnership between Telenet and Snowflake.
Members of the Telenet team recently attended a Snowflake Summit event, “and they were really enthusiastic about their experience at the event,” reported Verbruggen. “They loved the event’s focus and the chance to speak with their peers in person. I hope we can bring our own success story to a Snowflake event soon.”
“We also recently hosted our own event about how we manage data in AWS, and we were delighted to have Snowflake experts join us at that event to share their experiences,” added Smets. To round out Telenet’s events season, Smets will also speak at the upcoming World Mobile Conference in Barcelona next year.
A simpler, more collaborative future with a full data platform
“I see Snowflake as the cornerstone of our data setup moving forward,” predicted Verbruggen. “With Snowflake, we get everything we need to serve our customers in a single platform. And with proper governance and data masking, that platform offers rich features to respect privacy.”
“With Snowflake, we get everything we need to serve our customers in a single platform. And with proper governance and data masking, that platform offers rich features to respect privacy.”Pieter-Jan Verbruggen, Product Owner | Data & Analytics Platform
Snowflake’s collaboration tools are also poised to help Telenet—and its partners—grow. “I hope this boosts external data sharing as well,” said Verbruggen. “Larger organizations today use multiple clouds, and sharing data between them can be difficult. Snowflake’s cloud-agnostic approach is great for us and will open up collaboration possibilities with internal and external users.”
Smets shares a similarly positive outlook: “Ultimately, our ambitions demand a lot of data work. Not all of it impacts the end customer, but by making things more efficient, Snowflake helps us save resources that we can reinvest in things that truly make us more customer-centric.”