BCE (TSX:BCE)(NYSE:BCE) is Canada’s largest communications company, offering a wide range of telecommunications products and services. The company is the largest local exchange carrier in Canada. and operates an extensive local access network throughout Canada. It provides a complete suite of wireless communications, wireline voice and data, including internet access and television product and service offerings to residential, business, and wholesale customers.
It also owns Bell Media, Canada’s leading content creation company with premier assets in video, radio, and digital media. BCE is one of the largest wireless operators in Canada based on the number of subscribers, providing approximately 10.2 million subscribers with nationwide mobile voice and data services.
Further, BCE is also the largest internet service provider in Canada based on the number of subscribers, providing approximately 3.7 million retail customers with high-speed internet access. The company is also the largest TV provider in Canada based on the number of subscribers, nationally broadcasting a wide range of domestic and international programming to approximately 2.7 million retail subscribers.
Key competitive advantages
Marketing and distribution channels give BCE a key competitive advantage. With a wireless network service footprint that encompasses more than 99% of the Canadian population, a coast-to-coast national fibre transport network, and a local exchange carrier footprint from Manitoba to the Atlantic provinces, BCE is well-positioned to take advantage of integrated wireless and wireline solutions in the future.
Bell’s leadership position in broadband internet and TV and the company’s broad suite of product offerings serve as a foundation for the other products and services it offers. This provides it with a significant number of established customer connections to drive uptake of new products and services, either through bundled offerings or on a stand-alone basis and allows BCE to improve customer retention.
Further, BCE’s wireless segment provides wireless services over technologically advanced wireless networks that are available to virtually all of the Canadian population. The company offers a broad range of wireless voice and data communications products and services to residential and business customers through the Bell brand, as well as the company’s Virgin Mobile and Lucky Mobile brands which enhance BCE’s competitive market position by allowing it to compete more effectively with the Canadian industry’s other discount brands as well as regional facilities-based wireless service providers.
Wireless is a key growth segment for BCE, and the company has established strategic priorities seeking to further enhance BCE’s offerings. Public reports suggest that the company is focused on maintaining a market share of national operators’ wireless postpaid net customer activations, continuing to grow BCE’s prepaid subscriber base, increasing adoption of unlimited data plans, improving sales execution and customer retention, and introducing new devices and data services.
Further, Bell’s 5G network covers 26% of Canada’s population. The high capacity and near-instant connections offered by mobile 5G could support a virtually unlimited range of new consumer and business applications in coming years, including virtual and augmented reality, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, immersive entertainment services, connected vehicles, smart cities and enhanced rural access for government enterprises. This positions it well for the future.
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Fool contributor Nikhil Kumar has no position in any of the stocks mentioned.