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  • eTEN

    Trans-European Telecommunications Networks

    PROJECT FINAL REPORT

    [09 / 2004]

    VER. 1.1

    Contract No.: 28635 Project Acronym: STAR

    Project title: Strategic Territorial Agency Reunification

    Project Co-ordinator: SINTRA Francesco Fusco

    Signature.................................... Date 14/09/2004

  • Project Review Report 2 of 47

    Table of Contents

    A. PART A. PROJECT SELF-ASSESSMENT SUMMARY............................................................. 3

    A.1 OBJECTIVES: .......................................................................................................................... 3 A.2 VALIDATION RESULTS: ........................................................................................................... 5 A.3 PARTNERS’ COMMITMENT TO DEPLOYMENT:........................................................................... 8

    B. PART B. ASSESSMENT OF THE WORK DONE................................................................... 10

    B.1 MAJOR VALIDATION ACHIEVEMENTS: ....................................................................................10 B.2 MAJOR SHORTCOMINGS:........................................................................................................12 B.3 CHANGES TO ORIGINAL PLAN:................................................................................................12

    C. WORK DONE............................................................................................................................ 13

    C.1 MAIN OBJECTIVES OF THE REMAINING WORK:........................................................................13 C.1.1 Final Business Plan ...................................................................................................... 13 C.1.2 Pilot tests..................................................................................................................... 15 C.1.3 Dissemination and starting of deployment...................................................................... 16

    D. PLANS FOR IMPLEMENTATION AND DEPLOYMENT....................................................... 19

    D.1 THE SERVICES: ......................................................................................................................19 D.1.1 Describe the services that will be provided including the information content................... 19 D.1.2 Provide a technical and functional description of the infrastructure needed...................... 20

    D.2 THE MARKET ........................................................................................................................25 D.2.1 Describe how the services will be marketed, including the pricing approach. ................... 29 D.2.2 Describe the expected competition and the expected market share. .................................. 31 D.2.3 Quantitative Analysis.................................................................................................... 33 D.2.4 Number of possible Marketing Areas ............................................................................. 33

    D.3 THE KEY ACTORS:.................................................................................................................34 D.3.1 Identify the key actors (public and private) needed to deploy and operate the services....... 34 D.3.2 Report on the need to involve other partners in the operational phase of the project. ........ 35 D.3.3 Report on the planned initiatives to prepare deployment................................................. 35

    D.4 INVESTMENT IN THE OVERALL PROJECT..................................................................................35 D.4.1 Provide a provisional time table of the project for the deployment and operation of the overall project. ............................................................................................................................. 36 D.4.2 The VTA-Network ......................................................................................................... 37

    D.5 RISKS AND DEPENDENCIES.....................................................................................................39 D.6 FINANCE ...............................................................................................................................40

    D.6.1 Investments .................................................................................................................. 41 D.6.2 Costs ........................................................................................................................... 42 D.6.3 Revenues...................................................................................................................... 44 D.6.4 Profit / Loss Analysis.................................................................................................... 45 D.6.5 Cash Flow.................................................................................................................... 46

  • Project Review Report 3 of 47

    A. PART A. PROJECT SELF-ASSESSMENT SUMMARY

    A.1 Objectives:

    1. Do the project objectives (both the long-term objectives of the project overall and the short term ones of the feasibility/validation phase) remain valid or is there a need for change?

    Within the scope of the STAR (Strategic Territorial Agency Reunification) project the business idea of creating a so-called Virtual Territorial Agency (VTA) has been validated by a consortium of public and private partners coming from three different European countries (Italy, Germany and the United Kingdom). The VTA is a coordinated set of instruments for the creation of an Internet-based local territorial marketing agency. As a common framework it will merge all the existing relevant data and services of a region into a suitable platform, actively involving political and business decision-makers. Thus, it will offer concrete marketing services to a large number of business investors. The VTA aims to help public administrations to:

    • extend territorial marketing to a broader audience;

    • facilitate access to local resources;

    • integrate business services to overcome fragmentation in assistance to investors;

    • enhance local systems with one-to-one communication, interactive services and transactions.

    During the STAR project, a prototype of the VTA was developed and tested in four European regions (Piacenza, Bologna, Norfolk and Saarbrücken). In this phase the following common products were identified:

    • An open reference and specifications manual to give instructions and specifications on how to

    build up a TM web agency

    • An enabling web template (prototype structure) which has been populated at four pilot sites to

    demonstrate viability

    • An auxiliary set of supporting services (consultancy, training, marketing kit) to its deployment. The validation of the STAR prototype by the members of the STAR consortium has led to the conclusion that the VTA represents a unique and economic tool to set up a virtual territorial agency in order to promote a territory and attract business investments. Therefore, the STAR consortium intends to start a deployment phase for the VTA after the validation has been finished and market the VTA and its components within the countries of the European Union.

    In the long run, the project STAR aims at creating and validating a set of official local points to efficiently promote the territory and attract investors, by collecting and harmonising, within one single cooperative framework, existing data and services, so far individually provided by each single public organisation (e.g. Chambers of Commerce, Trade Associations, Provincial Business Departments, Banks, etc).

  • Project Review Report 4 of 47

    As short term objectives to be achieved during the validation phase, the project STAR aims at defining

    • the commercial services for the TM web site • the target market to be served • the best deployment approach

    After an in-depth analysis of the state of the art and market demand in the three reference European countries, we can affirm the main goal is still valid.

    A few and weak the attempts are so far to set up a local (web) agency that actually regroup all the territorial marketing resources, provided by the independent organisations within the same region.

    Three deliverables (D4.1, D5.1, D6.1) report in detail the great number of local web sites dealing with marketing services and how this fragmentation hampers the concrete business attraction and relocation.

    While the deliverables D4.3,D5.3 and D6.3 describe how the final STAR prototypes web sites were implemented to demonstrate the improved functionality of an integrated dedicated territorial marketing web agency.

    2. Given the current progress on the project, does the project co-ordinator believe that these objectives can be achieved within the available budget and timeframe?

    STAR represents a key change from existing, apparently similar projects because it will consider and validate solutions to the most common pitfalls. The services and products derived from the project STAR will in fact solve the following two critical issues which, today more than once, could be the cause of failure:

    • a need for frequent and low-cost updates of the information offered. This has proven to be a critical issue for all similar initiatives so far.

    • a need for reliability from the services provider’s poi