In Europe, the wholesale market is rapidly developing as carriers, ISPs and service providers increasingly provide products and services to each other. Some carriers see the wholesale business as a complement to their traditional retail business to end-users, as well as an interesting line of business that can improve their profitability in the short and mid-term. Others have focused themselves only on this category of activity.
Close co-operations in the form of interconnection agreements for the completion of international calls have existed for a long time between traditional operators, such as British Telecom, Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom, or AT&T outside of Europe. This co-operation is at the origin of such organisations as the ITU. Presently and more and more in the future such co-operations are extending beyond just interconnection in order to offer a more comprehensive portfolio of products and services through agreements addressing national as well as international markets.