Telstra, Australia’s largest telecommunications company, has said it will acquire the network firm CBO Telecommunications for an undisclosed sum.
CBO specialises in designing, building and maintaining enterprise networks used across mining sites. The value of Telstra’s existing operations in the mining industry is thought to exceed $100 million.
Telstra is looking to capitalise on the resource sector’s desire to automate and create greater efficiencies in the workforce amid a slump in commodity prices.
David Keenan, Head of Telstra Global Industries, said: “The decline in global commodity prices is largely driving a downturn in the resources sector and, as a consequence, sharpening the industry’s focus on reducing costs and maximising production.
“This downturn has created a once in a lifetime shift, where miners are looking to technology innovation to help them future proof their operations. Telstra Mining Services will be focused on helping our mining customers drive better business outcomes by significantly improving in-shift staff and asset productivity.”
Telstra has appointed two global mining experts — Jeannette McGill and Eric Nettleton — to oversee the mining technology unit created from the acquisitions, called Telstra Mining Services.
“Building on our strong organic foundation, the acquisition of CBO’s network consulting, engineering and services business was the next step to expand our communications business beyond the mine gate,” Keenan said.