Abstract: The Role of Telefonica: The Internationalization of Telecommunications in Spain, 1970-2000

Santiago López

Abstract

In this paper, I explore Telefonica's role in the technological and enterprise development of Spain. During the early formation of data transmission networks in the 1970s, Telefonica created an industrial group with its own companies and foreign technology partners (Fujitsu and American Telephone and Telegraph). Their significant technological achievement was the RETD (Special Data Transmission Network), conceived as a network of general-purpose universal access using packet switching. The recent privatization of Telefonica has influenced the evolution of telecommunications equipment suppliers. My primary objective is the study of the competitive advantages of Telefonica using data from OECD Communications Outlook. I also study the changes in the relationships between Telefonica and its old industrial companies and explain the internationalization of Telefonica as a process-based relationship of mutual trust between "technological groups" (similar to business groups).

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