James Bellis, a Director in the Telecommunications Practice, has over 15 years’ experience advising world leading operators, regulators and policy makers across the globe. James knows the importance of working closely with clients to fully understand their objectives and constraints. He is adept at leveraging his strong international experience to develop locally relevant, innovative approaches. Using his vast industry expertise and thorough economic knowledge, James is highly skilled at developing clear, practical solutions, reflecting each client’s unique circumstances.
Much of James’s work focuses on market liberalisation, competition assessments, retail and wholesale pricing, cost accounting, spectrum pricing and policy, universal service and policies to promote high speed broadband services. He leads much of Frontier’s telecommunications work outside Europe, focusing on the Middle East and Caribbean in particular and has managed a number of complex assignments working with other experts and client teams.
James leads much of Frontier’s international telecoms work, advising leading operators, regulators and policy makers around the world. He has a particular focus on the design and implementation of regulatory policy, having advised parties during market reviews to determine the need for regulation, on the design of retail and wholesale price controls, accounting separation and network modelling, spectrum management, policies to promote universal access to services and to support the roll out of new, high speed services; and advising parties in the sector during assessments of alleged anti-competitive behaviour.
James regularly supports operators to understand the implications of regulatory proposals and in then presenting those cases to national authorities, whilst he also assists regulatory authorities in understanding the dynamics of the market and how regulatory policy should be designed to meet its objectives; within this assisting authorities in the preparation of consultation papers and regulations.
Over recent years, James has advised many players in the telecoms sector in the Middle East and as such has developed a detailed understanding of the commercial, regulatory and policy environment of the sector. For example, he has led ground-breaking Frontier projects in the region: leading to the deregulation of services, the award of new licences and the development of detailed new regulatory regimes.
James advises clients on the regulatory, competition and policy aspects of the media sector, particularly given the increasing convergence of telecoms and media content. For example, he has advised the UK Government on the economic impact of reserving key sports rights for free to air broadcast and advised a European telecoms operator interesting in bundling TV and telephony / internet services, considering the regulatory implications that could arise from such offers.
James specialises in the design of economic regulation. Though his advisory work in the telecoms sector, he has supported both regulators and operators in the design of price regulation, leading studies to examine the appropriate scope of controls and the level of price reductions required in a price cap. He has also supported many parties in designing wholesale regulations, for example considering the forms of network access which should be introduced and then developing or reviewing the detailed economic models necessary to set prices for those services. James’s work has also covered the design of regulation for new high speed fibre networks, with him having advised authorities in both Singapore and Australia on the design of wholesale access price regulation for planned nationwide fibre networks.
In addition to his work in telecoms, he also advised a major infrastructure company in South Africa who was facing economic regulation, examining potential regulatory models and advising the company on the key parameters of the future regulation.