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A Great Comeback Story
[August 14, 2009]

A Great Comeback Story

Executive Editor, IP Communications Magazines
 
You could say I’m a microcosm of the communications sector. I’ve experienced a layoff and struggled amidst the troubled economy, but because I had a plan, money in the bank and a good support system I survived. Now – like many in the communications space – I’m making a comeback and looking forward to better times ahead.
 
After five months of looking for the right opportunity, I have joined TMC (News - Alert) as executive editor for the IP Communications Group. The responsibilities of my new post include managing the day-to-day editorial operations of Internet Telephony Magazine, Next Generation Networks Magazine and Unified Communications (News - Alert) Magazine.

 
Many of you know me from my work as a telecommunications trade industry journalist. I look forward to continue working with you in my new capacity. And I’m anxious to contribute the experience and contacts I’ve gained during my 18-year telecom reporting career to the already considerable assets of TMC.
 
As you probably already know, TMC is a successful, 37-year-old company that continues to invest in its staff so it can bring readers news, views and feature-length educational pieces both online and in print. TMC also presents ITEXPO, the industry’s leading IP communications trade show, in addition to other top-notch events.
 
That said, at first I wondered if this upbeat assessment for the future was simply due to my good fortune in joining the TMC staff. But, while it’s not all blue skies ahead, the headlines of the past several weeks certainly seem to support the view that we are on the road to recovery. 
 
From a macro economic view, the annual rate of decline in gross domestic product was smaller than expected in the second quarter, the housing market has shown some signs of recovery, the labor market appears to be stabilizing, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase have reported huge profits, and the Dow made it past 9000.
 
As for the tech sector, as a Washington Post column in early August noted:  “If U.S. stocks have been hot recently, technology shares have been blistering.” The piece mentioned that key examples driving this surge included terrific iPhone sales, which fueled a 15 percent increase in Apple’s quarterly profit, and Intel (News - Alert) Corp.’s unexpectedly strong results in light of strong chip demand.
 
 
Even Alcatel-Lucent, which has been struggling since its two parts merged three years ago; Comcast (News - Alert) Corp., which has had significant financial challenges in the past couple years; and Cisco Systems, which posted a 46 percent drop in quarterly profit, are singing what in these times could be considered a happy tune.
 
Posting its first quarterly profit since the combination in 2006, ALU’s chief executive was recently quoted as saying he expects the company to return to "normal" profitability by 2011 after breaking even this year. Comcast, meanwhile, saw second quarter earnings rise 53 percent and CEO Brian Roberts said he doesn’t expect the slowdown to last.
 
But what really convinced me things are improving was some commentary from Cisco’s John Chambers (News - Alert), who has taken no pains to sugar-coat the extent of the economic downturn and its impact on the communications marketplace. Chambers now says it appears things are starting to level out. The head of the tech bellwether said he sees signs the economy has reached a “tipping point” this quarter and has promised to return Cisco to double-digit growth.
 
I look forward to experiencing the upside of this next cycle with all of you.



Edited by Erik Linask

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