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MEF Members met in London last week for our fully hybrid (face-to-face and virtual) Business Messaging related event for 2022 – MEF CONNECTS Omnichannel. Taking place at The Kings Fund  in London, Members and guests gathered to review Omnichannel strategies, build new partnerships, identify new target audiences for goods and services, integrate new ideas and expand their knowledge of this fast-growing area.

Two-thirds of MEF members are active across MEF’s  Future of Messaging programme and interest in the area is strengthening yet further;  the Business Messaging industry is converging with Conversational Commerce, and more widely with Customer Care and Digital Marketing.

Now is the time for you to seize the Omnichannel opportunity, taking advantage of the fantastic Mobile Digital Channels out there, to grow your business all whilst protecting your customers, and this event will show you how.

Day One

Keynote: The Three Pillars Of A Top-Notch Customer Journey

Join our flagship event sponsor for a look into the history of the customer journey and how it has evolved in the last 10 years. You’ll be introduced to the three pillars critical to delivering an excellent customer journey – marketing, authentication and of course customer service – and see real-world examples of how these are put into action!

  • Divya Ghai Wakankar, VP Enterprise Business & Marketing – BICS

Analyst Briefing : The Truth About the CPaaS Opportunity

Join the Chief Insight Analyst of Business Messaging research experts Mobilesquared for a solid overview of the CPaaS opportunity. Nick Lane will take us through what CPaaS actually means for both CPaaS providers and suppliers alike, the impact of The Messageverse and the importance of safeguarding the CPaaS future.

  • Nick Lane, Chief Insight Analyst, Mobilesquared

The A2P SMS Generation Game Goes On – Who is Going to Win?

The unprecedented increases in international A2P SMS rates since the beginning of 2022 have led to a surge in revenues, making it even more lucrative for bad actors carrying out Artificial Generation fraud. Industry stakeholders are now seriously concerned this could lead to SMS becoming an unwanted component of Omnichannel communications and this panel brings together experts to discuss this issue, leaving no stone unturned. This will be a hard-hitting discussion which brings this dark art fully under the microscope so don’t miss it!

  • James Williams, Director of Programmes – MEF
  • Vladimir Smal, Head of Sales & Procurement, Global Messaging – LANCK Telecom
  • Tim Biddle, Director of Operator Relations, UK & Ireland – Sinch
  • Kevin Graham, Senior Director, Operator Services – Vonage
  • Simon Nainkin, VP Product Partnerships, Clickatell

Validation Challenges With Voice, Messaging & RCS

  • Ross Flynn, Advisor – MEF
  • Tim Ward, VP Number Information Services – XConnect
  • Jason Lunn, Global Connectivity CPaaS – Cisco

Messages By Google & Rich Business Messaging – An Update

Learn about the progress RCS is making in delivering reliable, safe, and helpful communication to users and businesses

  • Craig Lennon, Global Partnerships Lead – Google

Omnichannel Messaging For Climate Net Zero Objectives

With the COP27 meeting in Egypt fresh in mind, this session will discuss how exactly our telecoms industry can deliver concrete actions to tackle the climate emergency – from handset recycling programmes to SMS alerts, and even carbon neutral roaming, as Swisscom will demonstrate, we’ll be covering the lot! This session seeks renewed solidarity between mobile ecosystem stakeholders to deliver on the landmark Paris Agreement for people and the planet!

  • Gerrit Jan Konijnenberg, Board Advisor – MEF
  • John Pawluk, Senior Wholesale Roaming Manager – Swisscom
  • Jorge Lopez, Senior Wholesale Roaming Manager – Swisscom

Does Voice Have A Future?

Join this panel discussion to really get to the bottom of where voice is today, the challenges the market faces and a good look into the myriad of new opportunities there are now for it if the industry collaborates to shore up its position… You will also get latest market data and insights on the most recent Juniper research “The Future of Monetisable Voice Services”

  • James Williams, Director of Programmes – MEF
  • Teodor Magureanu, Chief of Staff – VOX Solutions
  • Iulian Botirlaianu, Global VP of Strategic Partnerships – VOX Solutions
  • Sam Barker, Head of Analytics & Forecasting – Juniper Research

Fake Accounts: How Can Brands Avoid Them?

Brands and Social Media organizations dominantly use A2P SMS to verify phone numbers as part of a new account sign-up. In recent years, Social Media and OTT brands are becoming infected with fake user accounts, which is damaging the brand reputation as well as inflicting spurious costs associated with paying for artificial A2P SMS traffic. The panel will discuss actions that the ecosystem are taking to help Brands to avoid fake accounts

  • Ross Flynn, Advisor – MEF
  • John Murtagh, Senior Partner Products – Infobip
  • Allister Fraser, Digital Identity New Business Development – EE
  • Vimal Odedra, MNO Partnership Development Manager – JT
  • Rajiv Singla, CEO Global Messaging – Globe Teleservices

The Metaverse: A Driver of Real Change for People With Disabilities?

Dr. Mike Short and Chris Lewis will build on the work that has been done around accessibility over the last decade and how the goal of everyone living and working in the Metaverse is a major opportunity to bring all formerly excluded groups into a better connected world. This is not a CSR, ESG or EDI issue but impacts everyone contributing  to the role of the telecoms industry in the Metaverse.

Everyone will benefit as long as we take the holistic view now and build the right hooks into our systems, devices, applications and services. Join us for this exciting panel by these esteemed speakers

  • Chris Lewis, Founding Director – Lewis Insight
  • Dr Mike Short CBE, Chief Scientific Adviser – Department for International Trade

Day Two

In Conversation with WhatsApp

WhatsApp now has over 2.5 Billion Global users and an ever expanding range of businesses delivering key experiences for their customers around the world. In this session David & Yulia will be discussing why Messaging is so important to Meta, the range of meta channels and how they see the value across them. We’ll take a look at some of the latest launches and what they’re achieving as well as taking a look at what’s next for WhatsApp.

  • David Creasey-Benjamin, Future Messaging Evangelist – Webex CPaaS Solutions
  • Yulia Dakin, Business Development & Partnerships – WhatsApp

Mastering Customer-Centricity Through an Omnichannel Approach

As the needs of end-users continue to diversify, it’s crucial organizations deploy the right approach to remedy their demands. Join Infobip and learn how an intricate omnichannel strategy can improve customer experiences. Listen to practical advice and use cases from the real world and apply them to your own scenario and challenges.

  • Julian Dawkins, Senior Product Marketing Manager – Infobip

Digital Marketing Communication Trends & the Evolution of Customer Behaviour – Opportunities & Challenges for 2023 & Beyond

Companies and stores are out, experiences are in. Faceless brands and services don’t have a chance in today’s market given just how fast consumer behaviour has evolved and continues to do so. Join this panel to understand exactly how profound the implications of this are and how we as an industry should be interacting with today’s consumer.

  • James Williams, Director of Programmes – MEF
  • Sam Kraehenbuehl, Commercial Director – TeleWhale
  • Deshbandhu Bansal, COO, Messaging Solutions – Comviva
  • John Owen, CEO Europe & Americas – Route Mobile
  • Kerstin Trikalitis, Co-Founder & CEO – Out There Media

Differentiated Pricing: Is It The Easiest Innovation For MNOs To Grab More Share Of The Omnichannel?

Driving revenue and expanding use cases for A2P SMS has never been more important. However, if A2P SMS is to continue its growth within the Omnichannel marketplace, a simple change in approach is required.  MNOs need to adopt robust pricing strategies which empowers the enterprise without risk of cannibalisation. In turn MNOs will achieve rapid revenue growth from their traditional asset. In this session, Mobilesquared’s Nick Lane and HAUD’s Joanna Kuligowska unpick the barriers to adoption and investigate just how easy it is for MNOs to implement a differentiated pricing strategy

  • Joanna Kuligowska, Head of Global Market Intelligence – HAUD
  • Nick Lane, Chief Insight Analyst & Founder – Mobilesquared Ltd

What Will Be The Key Characteristics Of An Exceptional Customer Journey In 2023?

Join industry experts for an in-depth look at how different departments approach customer engagement, coming to understand exactly how CPaaS is central to delivering a personalized communication experience at every customer journey touchpoint

  • James Williams, Director of Programmes – MEF
  • Divya Ghai Wakankar, VP Enterprise Business & Marketing – BICS
  • Cristina Constandache, Chief Revenue Officer – Rakuten Viber
  • Mauro Carobene, Chief Business Officer – Kaleyra
  • David Fernandez Vinuales, Strategic Partnerships Lead, Rich Business Messaging – Google

RCS Roundtable

Infobip and industry partners discuss three winning strategies to enable brands to include RBM in their messaging mix, enabling them to capitalise on the reach and rich opportunities it brings.

  • Michael Power, Founder – Engage Mobile
  • Kim Johal, Senior Sales Manager – Infobip
  • Tim Atkinson, RCS Business Development Manager – Google
  • Catherine Maguire, Product Manager – BT
  • David Boddington, Senior Product Manager – Infobip
  • Claudine Bell, Partner Business Manager, Commerce Wholesale – Virgin Media O2

New Threats to Omnichannel: 2022 in Review

The holy grail of enterprise communications is to deploy solutions bringing together a variety of channels with which clients are already most comfortable with, and which enable genuine conversational capabilities between both parties. Omnichannel is the bedrock of this. The Business Messaging market is on a rapid growth trajectory but wherever money flows to, bad actors will be in hot pursuit. Threat vectors are increasing and the ingenuity and prevalence of these bad actors should not be ignored. Join a panel of anti-fraud experts to understand exactly what has been going on this year and see what the future of Omnichannel might hold through 2023 and beyond…

  • James Williams, Director of Programmes – MEF
  • Simeon Coney, Chief Strategy Officer – ENEA AdaptiveMobile Security

Consumer Protection: The Necessity of an Integrated Lifecycle Approach

Etched into the bedrock of the Business Messaging world is trust. Without that the industry has nothing. Everybody is aware of the need for cybersecurity but the reality is that no matter what you do, at some point your network is going to be breached. So how do you go about limiting the amount of harm to your business should (when?) a bad actor arrives on the scene. The name of the game is speed and communication across all stakeholders. Providing a very fitting topic to close the event with, data vetting experts Aegis Mobile will be bringing experts from across the ecosystem to review the whole lifecycle – from onboarding and vetting to filtering messages that have been flagged up as spam organisations the world over need to be on top of everything at all times. Join us to find out how this can be made a reality for all.

  • James Williams, Director of Programmes – MEF
  • John Bruner, CEO – Aegis Mobile
  • Catherine Maguire, Product Manager – BT
  • Carlos Villanueva, Co-Founder & Chief Revenue Officer – Enabld
  • Anurag Aggarwal, Chief Growth Officer, Globe Teleservices.