“If Telecom Council didn’t exist, we’d have to build something to replace it”
—Rob Hull / BT
TELECOM COUNCIL'S MISSION
The Telecom Council Forums connect global communication service providers and vendors with innovations that are pushing the industry forward. Since 2001, our Forums have been introduced to over 2000 executives from 750 communication companies including 60 carriers across 30 meetings each year.
The Telecom Council is built around a legacy group called the Service Provider's Investment Forum (SPIF) that was formed informally in 2001 by Rob Hull of British Telecom, Ursula Oesterle of Swisscom, Rob Trice of Nokia Venture Partners, and Ian Foley of Telecom Italia Mobile as a monthly lunch discussion on telecom issues, hot startups and trends. With the help of The Kerton Group, the SPIF grew quickly to over 10 carriers, outgrew restaurants and moved into conference rooms. By 2004, we added quarterly meetings to include telecom vendors which added Samsung, Sony, Motorola, Qualcomm, and Intel's venture groups among others. By 2006, prominent local wireless VC Tim Chang had recognized the value of the SPIF to his portfolio companies and suggested that a community should be built with the SPIF as the “anchor tenant”. Tim and Liz Kerton drew the first rough plan for the Council on a napkin at Michaels at Shoreline. In the fall of 2007, the plan was set in motion.
Today, the Telecom Council of Silicon Valley has 4 Forums, including the original Service Provider Forum, and our membership has grown to include startups, VCs, infrastructure companies, and companies who are not based in Silicon Valley but work here regularly.