Q&A with Antonietta Mastroianni, Chief Digital & IT Officer at Proximus
What do you believe are the 3 most important components of a purposeful business?
Firstly, a business should play a significant role in building a more flourishing and enriching economy by building an ecosystem that breaks the silos of industries.
A purposeful business should dare to be bold and take a stand on society’s most crucial issues, with focus on inclusivity.
It is also important that we move away from the notion of ‘us against them’. Collaborating with competitors is key to be rise above individual interests and take collective actions to address global issues.
How and when do you believe global telcos will meet their ambitious green network commitments?
The biggest commitment, which was also signed by Proximus, is the European Green Deal where one of the key objectives is to have no net emissions of greenhouse gasses by 2050. Proximus went a step further in this and committed to this objective by 2040. Acting for a green society is one of the four pillars of the Proximus strategy.
Most of us are aware of the recent reports that are quite alarming, and I believe we need to increase our pace towards a resource-efficient, green world. I also see an increasing willingness to act on this across the telco industry. The next step is to translate this into concrete actions and investments, which is being done by more or less half of the telco companies. We can do better than that, especially since the telco industry can play a significant role in becoming more resource-efficient given the nature of the infrastructure and services we provide.
Getting there requires a change in mindset but also the debunking of some myths. Being more environmentally conscious does not necessarily have to equate lower financial results or slower growth. There are plenty of examples where financial growth and sustainability go hand in hand. Look for example at the Joint Venture of Proximus with Orange where we share our network infrastructure which was a strategic and financially sound choice but also one that allows for a more efficient use of resources.
You have been nominated for 5G World’s Telco CxO of the Year; why are you excited about this nomination?
I’m extremely excited about this nomination since technology and its important role in changing society, has been my passion since I was young.
Voting for me is not simply voting for a personal recognition: it is supporting an ideology that wants to put technology, IT, digitalization, and the immense world of digital applications in the driving seat of decision-making. It’s about supporting the artistry of our technical experts who put their passion in delivering products that do not only play the role of a best friend in the life of our customers, but also help our society as a whole. Be it the strong or the weak, the young or the old, we all deserve fully inclusive access to these immense opportunities that serve our needs, make our life easier and connect us with our dear ones.
I’m happy with the nomination because it recognizes this important role of technology and digital solutions, which I see as a foundation for a better society and life.
You are also speaking at 5G World 2021. are you looking forward to the most at 5G World?
I'm looking very much forward to my time in London, 5G offers so many new possibilities that go well beyond our imagination so I can’t wait to meet all my fantastic colleagues and share ideas and experiences.
I strongly believe that new technologies like 5G require collaboration, sharing (part of) of solutions to create a distributed environment where everybody can have access to. The old silos of companies and industries need to be substituted by an ecosystem of hybrid solutions. In this light, personal connections across industries are of course important and I think the 5G World 2021 will be the perfect occasion for this.