Redknee raises Cdn$96 Million

Redknee Solutions Inc. Raises Cdn$96 Million.

Redknee Solutions Inc. announced that it has closed its previously announced rights offering to holders of its subordinate voting shares (the “Rights Offering”). Under the Rights Offering, an aggregate of 108,519,936 subordinate voting shares were issued at a subscription price of Cdn$0.63 per share for gross proceeds to the Company of approximately Cdn$68 million. The net proceeds of the Rights Offering will be used to fund a restructuring of the business in furtherance of the previously announced strategic plan (the “Strategic Plan”).

The Rights Offering was over-subscribed prior to ESW Capital, LLC (“ESW”) exercising its additional rights and, as such, Wave Systems Corp. was not required to fulfill its obligations under the standby purchase agreement. ESW exercised all of its rights received as a shareholder under the basic subscription privilege as well as all of the rights to which it was entitled under the additional subscription privilege.

Pursuant to the right previously granted to ESW to maintain its pro rata interest in the Company, ESW has agreed to subscribe for an additional 44,604,981 subordinate voting shares at a price of Cdn$0.63 per share for additional aggregate gross proceeds to the Company of approximately Cdn$28 million (the “Subsequent ESW Issuance”). The Subsequent ESW Issuance is scheduled to close on or about September 12, 2017.

Further details in link above.

Rostelecom demonstrates first multivendor transport SDN PoC

Rostelecom Demonstrates On-Demand Transport Services With the First Multivendor Transport SDN PoC in Russia.

Rostelecom PJSC announced that is has successfully completed the first proof of concept (PoC) compatibility test for transport software-defined networking (SDN) in Russia.

Optical networking equipment from Huawei, NEC and Netcracker and Nokia was included in the PoC, as well as their corresponding domain SDN controllers were managed by an umbrella transport SDN controller provided by NEC/Netcracker. The new hierarchical approach to the transport systems based on SDN ensures an end-to-end control and entire visibility as well as fully automated operations across three separate optical multivendor domains.

Cloud applications and IoT services are driving rapid bandwidth growth, and networks are scaling up more dynamically as a result. This growing trend is also driving the demand for faster creation, deployment of services and a quicker restoration. Rostelecom recognizes the opportunity to meet this need through transport SDN. It is also using this opportunity to test the system’s multivendor capabilities.

The PoC was designed to test a number of scenarios. The multivendor aspect was addressed by selecting the largest producers of optical equipment including Huawei, NEC/Netcracker and Nokia. The umbrella transport SDN controller was provided by NEC/Netcracker through a uniform multidomain view to increase network agility, ensure transparency, particularly when it comes to the rapid development of the systems and its restoration capabilities.

With these elements in place, Rostelecom clients have access to brand-new, on-demand transport services that are automatically provisioned and dynamically optimized in accordance with bandwidth and network performance requirements.

The PoC also demonstrated that the service ordering time, configuration and activation process had been significantly reduced, thereby decreasing the time to enter the market from months to just few hours. Furthermore, the system produced fewer errors and it simplifies the configuration process.

“Together with equipment vendors Huawei, NEC/Netcracker and Nokia, Rostelecom proves transport SDN‘s ability to reduce costs and improve network automation,” said Alexey Sapunov, Rostelecom Senior Vice President for Technical Infrastructure. “By using NEC/Netcracker’s multidomain transport SDN controller, which managed multiple underlying domain controllers, Rostelecom was able to eliminate vendor lock-in and lay the foundation for a true multivendor infrastructure.”

“Networks need to undergo a significant transformation and we are excited that the demonstration results showed our Multilayer SDN Controller’s ability to simplify and automate complex networks,” said Aloke Tusnial, Chief Technology Officer of SDN/NFV Business at Netcracker. “By proving interoperability across multiple optical vendors, NEC/Netcracker is helping service providers like Rostelecom to fundamentally rethink their network design and level of automation.”

“Huawei TSDN provides automatic discovery of resources, automatic service provisioning and recovery, and RESTful NBI to 3rd party orchestrator to achieve multi-domain network unified control. This PoC test proved Huawei Transport SDN service automation and NBI openness,” said Jin Yuzhi, President of Huawei Transmission Network Product Line. “Beyond that Huawei has been developing the NCE (Network Cloud Engine) to streamline the end-to-end operation process on the network planning, management, control and analysis functionalities which will provide significant OPEX reduction.”

“NEC is proud to complete successfully the first multivendor transport SDN PoC in Russia. It proves the maximum performance to service providers across all transport layers with this multidomain, multilayer and multivendor transport SDN solution that optimizes network traffic and automates configuration,” said Akihiro Sakurai, Managing Director of JSC “NEC Neva Communications Systems,” NEC Corporation’s subsidiary in Russian Federation. “This proof of concept proved the ability to provide end-to-end network automation and control.”

“The PoC proves once again that networks based on the Nokia 1830 Photonic Service Switch (PSS) platform are open to automated Optical Service creation and operation even in multi-vendor environments by using the Open Abstract SDN APIs of the Network Services Platform (NSP),” said Demetrio Russo, Vice President of the East Europe Market at Nokia. “The NSP platform, our flagship SDN controller, provides world-leading service providers like Rostelecom with a unified and more efficient way to automate, optimize and assure network services across multiple network layers, physical/virtual infrastructure, as well as networks from multiple vendors.”

VMware scores ‘Huge Win’ with Vodafone for NFV

VMware Scores ‘Huge Win’ with Vodafone for NFV” according to

VMware scored a “huge win” with Vodafone as a new network functions virtualization (NFV) customer, VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger said yesterday.

“We have seen a strong start to Q3; we just signed our largest-ever telco deal with Vodafone,” Gelsinger said on VMware’s second quarter fiscal year 2018 earnings conference call. He called the Vodafone deal “a huge step forward in our NFV initiative,” adding that the company has more than 90 NFV wins and is seeing an uptick in deployments.

More on link.

Cisco to acquire Springpath

Cisco Announces Intent to Acquire Springpath.

Cisco announced its intent to acquire Springpath, Inc, a Sunnyvale-based leader in hyperconvergence software. This acquisition [reportedly for $320M] will allow Cisco to continue to deliver next-generation data center innovation to its customers. Springpath has developed a distributed file system purpose-built for hyperconvergence that enables server-based storage systems.

The acquisition is the culmination of a long-standing strategic relationship between Cisco and Springpath. The companies have worked together since early 2016 to launch HyperFlex, the industry’s first fully integrated hyperconvergence infrastructure system. Since then, they have fully aligned on product development and go-to-market strategies. This acquisition will allow Cisco to continue to grow its computing business, enabling more customers to realize the benefits of simple and economic software-defined infrastructure.

Hyperconverged infrastructure is projected to be a $6 billion opportunity by 2020 according to IDC, and is the fastest growing segment in the data center space. HyperFlex has already seen significant customer traction over the last year, garnering more than 1800 customers and establishing a tremendous quality record.
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CSG extends with DISH

CSG Extends Long-Term Relationship with DISH.

CSG Systems International announced that it will extend its agreement with Pay-TV company, DISH, through December 31, 2021.

Under a four-year extended agreement, CSG will continue to provide revenue management and customer care support for DISH’s residential video subscribers.

“As a trusted partner, CSG has helped DISH evolve our customer experience over the years,” said John Swieringa, executive vice president of Operations at DISH. “We’re committed to tuning in to our customers to continue this evolution, and we look forward to working with CSG to seamlessly connect our customers to the content they love.”

DISH will also expand its use of CSG’s digital services platform, Ascendon, to enhance its ability to price, promote, market and sell digital services. Ascendon will complement DISH’s robust, mobile and personalized digital consumer experience across devices.

“DISH has been a valued CSG customer for over 30 years while they continue to bring innovative video, over-the-top and business services to their customers,” said Brian Shepherd, executive vice president of CSG International. “This extended agreement reinforces our mutual commitment to helping DISH successfully execute on its long-term business plan.”

Netcracker to offer multivendor 5G-ready platform

NEC Corporation of Malaysia/Netcracker Collaborates With Red Hat, Juniper Networks and Dell EMC to Offer End-to-End Multivendor 5G-Ready Platform for Service Providers and Enterprises.

NEC Corporation of Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. and Netcracker Technology announced their collaboration with technology giants Red Hat, Juniper Networks and Dell EMC to offer an end-to-end multivendor 5G-ready virtualization platform for service providers and enterprises in Malaysia.

The partnership, building off its Ecosystem 2.0 Program will see NEC Corporation of Malaysia/Netcracker positioning itself as a full SDN/NFV (Software-Defined Networking/Network Functions Virtualization) solution provider that is capable of designing and deploying a network architecture concept that uses IT virtualization technologies to virtualize entire classes of network node functions into building blocks that may connect or chain together to create communication services.

At the SDN/NFV Solution and Partnership launch today, Mr. Chong Kai Wooi, Managing Director, NEC Corporation of Malaysia said, “Around the world we are seeing service providers in the US, South Korea, Sweden, Estonia, Turkey, Japan and China upgrading their network infrastructure in preparation to offer 5G communications services which are imminent. Commercializing such services, including the massive connectivity of people, transportation, objects and cities, is expected to take off in the next two to three years.”

“To stay competitive in a global economy, service providers and enterprises in Malaysia will eventually have the need to adapt to 5G technologies. With our SDN/NFV 5G-ready solution, companies will be able to speed up the time-to-market for their potential communications services and/or any applications that run on 5G technology, improve cost efficiency and have the ability to offer new, revenue generating-services.”

A 2017 study conducted by the European Communications on behalf of Netcracker, which surveyed individuals representing 56 different service providers in the communications industry from around the world, discovered that the top four benefits expected from SDN/NFV solutions include reduced time-to-market, improved network efficiency, capex savings and the opportunity to create and innovate new services, including over-the-top services.

Today, service providers and enterprises need six to twelve months to introduce a new service. With the full-service SDN/NFV solution in place, leveraging on the Ecosystem 2.0 Program, the time to launch new enterprise services can be reduced by up to 70 percent, according to a research by Netcracker.

The 5G-ready virtualization platform from NEC/Netcracker comprises Netcracker’s Hybrid Operations Management offering, Business Enablement applications, and NEC/Netcracker’s Virtualization Development and Operations Center and Multilayer SDN Controller.

It also comprises Red Hat OpenStack Platform, a highly scalable Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) solution that is designed to enable telcos to create modern infrastructure; Juniper’s NFV networking services platform which seamlessly integrates physical and virtual elements, enabling enterprises the flexibility to deploy scalable, secure and high-performing networks with a simple and open architecture; Dell EMC NFV solution engineered on its industry-leading PowerEdge platform as well as NEC/Netcracker’s Ecosystem 2.0 Program that takes out the pain of operating multivendor SDN/NFV services, reducing time-to-market and enabling rapid service innovation.

“As the industry moves quickly towards 5G technology, getting the management and orchestration environment right is critical to enable new IoT use cases requiring dynamic network slicing,” said Aloke Tusnial, CTO of SDN/NFV, Netcracker. “This is a key focus for us at Netcracker and we are delighted to be part of this strong collaboration to bring 5G virtualization to market faster.”

“?Since 2015, we have been working with NEC on NFV system integration with Red Hat OpenStack Platform and now we are excited to extend this alliance to Malaysia. NEC’s NFV system integrated with Red Hat OpenStack Platform is designed to deliver mobile packet core virtualization helping communications service providers (CSPs) to accelerate operations to achieve carrier-grade and carrier-scale systems,” said Damien Wong, vice president and general manager of ASEAN, Red Hat.

Mitch Lewis, vice president, APAC Partners and Alliances, Juniper Networks noted, “The industry is at a crucial transition, in which the gradual adoption of SDN/NFV infrastructure brings alongside with it tremendous opportunity in the transformative 5G economy. We greatly look forward to a close, continued partnership alongside our key alliance partners such as NEC as we drive networking innovation and help future-proof the networks for businesses across Malaysia and the world.”

The sentiment was echoed by Erwin Meyer, regional director – Asia Pacific South, OEM Solutions, Dell EMC. He said, “It is a time of unprecedented change globally in how service providers build and operate networks and services, and the focus on enabling businesses to realize the benefits of this new digital era is a top priority for Dell EMC. We are delighted to be part of an industry-leading collaboration that will equip Malaysian service providers and enterprises with the right solutions needed to accelerate the cycle of innovation, create competitive differentiation and ultimately – deliver the best possible customer experience for their customers.”

With 5G, public services can be enhanced further to offer next level of services where federal and state governments to connect people, transportation, objects and cities at higher speed and with fewer delays.

Smart cities or smart communities will also be closer to reality. As technology affects nearly all aspects of life, many governments are committed to staying current with technological developments and innovation to improve the lives of their citizens and continue to evolve in the global economy.

By offering a multivendor 5G-ready virtualization platform, NEC Corporation of Malaysia is optimistic that it can contribute significantly to its revenues in Malaysia.

Currently, 50 percent of its revenues are derived from carrier solutions, and the other 50 percent from enterprise and public safety solutions.

“As service providers and 5G technology services take center stage in the near future, we foresee our SDN/NFV solution to contribute 10 percent to our carrier solutions revenues for the first year and 30 percent for the next three years,” noted Chong.

Grupo Gtd selects Netcracker

Grupo Gtd Selects Netcracker’s Comprehensive BSS, OSS and Virtualization Suite as the Foundation for Digital Transformation.

NEC Corporation and Netcracker Technology announced that Grupo Gtd has selected the Netcracker 12 suite, comprised of next-generation BSS/OSS and virtualization capabilities, to enable its large-scale IT consolidation, transformation and network virtualization program. As the foundational platform, Netcracker 12 will help Grupo Gtd to consolidate systems, standardize operations and deliver innovative services over cloud-based and virtualized infrastructure.

Grupo Gtd is dedicated to providing high-quality, reliable telecommunications and IT solutions and services across Chile, Peru and Colombia. Netcracker 12’s suite will be used for a transformation program across Gtd Teleductos, the national B2B arm of the company; Gtd Manquehue, serving residential and business customers in Chile’s capital, Santiago; and Telefónica del Sur, which delivers residential and business services across southern Chile.

Grupo Gtd will use Netcracker 12’s comprehensive BSS including Digital Customer and Business Enablement domains, which encompass Customer & Partner Management, Customer Channel Management, Product Management, Sales & Marketing Management, Revenue Management, and Cloud Online Charging System, as well as Netcracker’s sophisticated Business Agility Layer. This will enable Grupo Gtd to seamlessly integrate multiple channels, enable converged billing for multiplay services, rationalize products and bring new digital services to market. It will lay the foundation for enhanced digital customer experience and accelerate time-to-market for personalized offerings to its diverse customer base.

On the operations and virtualization side of the transformation, Grupo Gtd will leverage Netcracker 12’s Digital Operations Enablement and Infrastructure Virtualization domains, comprising Hybrid Service Management, including Orchestration, and Hybrid Resource Management, to deploy new services faster and configure offerings on the fly across both physical and virtual infrastructure. The new capabilities will help Grupo Gtd improve network utilization and active inventory management and enable more efficient reconciliation processes through the use of up-to-date network information.

Grupo Gtd will also utilize Netcracker’s Professional Services, including End-to-End Implementation, Product Rationalization, Consulting and Data Migration expertise, to consolidate its diverse IT and network systems spread across multiple businesses, streamline operations, reduce costs and ensure that its business groups are aligned and utilize standardized processes and tools for overall business agility.

“We are moving aggressively to put in place the foundational infrastructure and platforms required to continue upgrading our digital capabilities. As such, we needed a partner like Netcracker, whose sophisticated BSS/OSS are enabling us to improve business and operational agility,” said Alberto Bezanilla, CEO of Grupo Gtd. “The reason we chose Netcracker was because we were looking for a strategic partner that could deliver all of the key components—innovative cloud-based applications, comprehensive virtualization capabilities and a proven delivery track record—that would enable a diverse telecommunications and IT services company like Gtd to transform and achieve our strategic business objectives.”

“Gtd’s diverse customers expect the most innovative offerings delivered with outstanding customer experience,” said Fabio Gatto, General Manager of LATAM at Netcracker. “We are excited to partner with Gtd, bringing the innovation of Netcracker 12 and our wide experience in enabling the digital transformation Gtd needs in order to keep building closer, deeper relationships with its customers.”

SaskTel transforms

SaskTel transforms for the future with next generation Order Management, Inventory, Assignment and Provisioning Solution.

SaskTel International announced the successful implementation of their next generation Order Management, Inventory, Assignment and Provisioning solution, Optius, into SaskTel’s business operations.

SaskTel is a leading communications service provider in Canada with over 1.4 million customer connections and $1.2 billion in annual revenue. In order to continue to evolve the company and adapt to changing business and market conditions, SaskTel recognized the need to transform their order management, plant inventory, assignment and provisioning capabilities. Delivering the variety of services that SaskTel’s clients require in a timely, flexible and accurate manner is of paramount importance.

“We’re very excited about this major achievement we have reached with SaskTel International,” said Doug Burnett, SaskTel Acting President and CEO. “The transition to Optius has positioned SaskTel for future growth as the industry continues to evolve and our customers continue to demand more personalized and advanced services. With Optius managing the inventory and provisioning of our network and services across both our copper and fiber facilities, we will see significant operational efficiencies, cost savings and improved customer experience.”

“We are incredibly happy with the success of SaskTel’s upgrade to Optius,” said Curtis Adair, President of SaskTel International. “SaskTel has always strived to have the greatest network, to offer the best services and to provide an unparalleled customer experience. Optius will help them continue to do so amid an incredibly competitive communications market by offering them the ability to deliver new and existing services faster through zero-touch automation, while improving business processes and reducing operational costs.”

Leveraging the latest technologies and standards, Optius will allow SaskTel to centralize and consolidate their full network inventory and to optimize their network and service order fulfillment process to achieve full flow-through provisioning of services. This optimization will reduce SaskTel’s time-to-market for new services and quickly meet new and changing market demands. Optius will provide SaskTel with the flexibility to customize and orchestrate service offerings based on individual needs, allowing them to enhance customer choice and satisfaction. SaskTel will be able to deliver its multi-play service offering, including customizable voice, broadband and video services over its copper and fiber networks within one solution.

SaskTel International’s world class solutions allow wireless and fixed line communications service providers within the telecom and cable industries to look to one partner to provide fully integrated, proven, flow through network and service provisioning over a broad spectrum of technologies.

Cisco completes Viptela acquisition

Cisco Completes Viptela Acquisition.

Cisco announced the close of its acquisition of Viptela [for $610M], a privately held company based in San Jose, CA that delivers a cloud-first, software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) solution.

In June, Cisco announced it is rewriting the enterprise networking blueprint with a new generation of intent-based networking solutions. Viptela’s software-driven, cloud-first architecture for the WAN fits well with Cisco’s Digital Network Architecture (DNA) building on its automation, virtualization and analytics capabilities. Viptela’s offering complements Cisco’s on-premises routing platform with a cloud-centric approach to control management and orchestration, making it easy for our customers to deploy and manage the WAN. Viptela also supports Cisco’s strategic transition toward cloud and software-centric solutions that deliver predictable recurring revenue.

Cisco will commit significant engineering resources to bring next-generation SD-WAN solutions to market. For customers and partners that require pure play enterprise grade SD-WAN, cloud networking and WAN network-as-a-service functionality, Cisco’s SD-WAN solution based on Viptela will be the preferred solution.

Oracle’s new Monetization Cloud service

New service complements Oracle ERP Cloud and Oracle Customer Experience Cloud Suite to provide monetization across the customer journey.

Oracle announced Oracle Monetization Cloud. The new cloud service accelerates time to market for digital and subscription-based products and services by enabling the full life cycle of customer on-boarding, offer creation, robust rating and discounting, billing, customized invoicing and reporting.

Enterprises are increasingly focused on generating recurring revenues and developing lasting customer relationships by extending from one-time purchases to recurring business models. Agile billing capabilities are required to help digital service providers monetize new offerings and differentiate their services in competitive markets. Oracle Monetization Cloud combines the power of scalable monetization capabilities with the simplicity, agility, and security of Oracle Cloud to accelerate time to market for digital services.

“Subscriptions, demand-based price models, pay-per-use, and increasingly complex agreements with a litany of unique entitlements are now the norm,” said Andrew Dailey, Managing Director of MGI Research.

Across industries and in scenarios ranging from cloud hosting to digital media to the Internet of Things, enterprises and digital service providers are looking to quickly launch new business models to compete in the digital economy. Whether these digital service providers are monetizing connected cars, using sensors to aggregate and monetize data, or transitioning to offering their software as a service, they are undergoing a digital transformation that requires flexible new pricing, billing, revenue management, and real-time subscriber management capabilities.

Hyperledger Adds Cisco as a Premier Member

Hyperledger Adds Cisco as a Premier Member.

Hyperledger, an open source collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies, announced today that Cisco has upgraded its General membership to Premier. As a Premier member, Ram Jagadeesan, Cisco Distinguished Engineer and Blockchain CTO, will join the Hyperledger Governing Board. Cisco joins other Premier members: Accenture, Airbus, American Express, Change Healthcare, CME Group, Deutsche Borse Group, Daimler, Digital Asset, DTCC, Fujitsu, Hitachi, IBM, Intel, J.P. Morgan, NEC, r3., SAP, and Wanda FFan Technology. Hyperledger Premier and General members cut across a wide vertical of industries.

“Blockchain technology represents the next generation of the Internet — the internet of value and trusted transactions which will drive extensive industry transformation. It is ever more important to come together and build open and interoperable solutions which will enable widespread adoption and allow companies to harness blockchain’s disruptive power,” said Jagadeesan. “We are excited to promote Hyperledger’s longevity and growth across multiple use cases and industries.”

Hyperledger aims to create common distributed ledger technology that enables organizations to build and run robust, industry-specific applications, platforms and hardware systems to support their individual business transactions. Since the beginning of 2016, Hyperledger has grown to more than 145 members that span various industries, including finance, healthcare, the Internet of Things and aeronautics, among several others.

“Cisco is a technology leader with expertise building secure, scalable and Internet scale critical infrastructure; We are thrilled they’re taking a leadership role within Hyperledger’s Governing Board,” said Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director, Hyperledger. “Cisco has been an active member of Hyperledger and we highly value its contributions to date.”

About Hyperledger
Hyperledger is an open source collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies. It is a global collaboration including leaders in finance, banking, Internet of Things, supply chains, manufacturing and Technology. The Linux Foundation hosts Hyperledger under the foundation. To learn more, visit:

Telus and Nuage Networks launch new SD-WAN platform

Telus and Nuage Networks launch new SD-WAN platform.

Telus, a Canadian telecommunications company, announced it is teaming up with Nuage Networks, a Nokia venture, to initiate Telus Network as a Service (NaaS), software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) platform.

SD-WAN is an emerging network architecture that decouples network control and forwarding functions. The technology enables businesses to create, manage and optimize WAN connections. Telus joined forces with Nuage Networks to address challenges regarding the amount of time it takes to turn up and connect websites.

Nuage Networks SD-WAN solution provides a single platform to connect internet sites both big and small. A customer can log into a portal, order connectivity for a site and go back to the portal to spin up a virtual function on a CPE, explained Hussein Khazaal, vice president of marketing and partnerships at Nuage Networks. With Nuage Networks SD-WAN, the amount of time it takes to bring up a site can be reduced by 80 %. Moreover, it minimizes costs, boosts business agility and provides the scalability needed to meet cloud-driven requirements

The roots of WAN technology trace back to the 90s. With the rise of the cloud, big data, the internet of things (IoT), and software as a service (SaaS), the SD-WAN market has undergone an exponential boom. According to a survey conducted by the market research firm IDC, approximately 70% of customers said they would review or use SD-WAN by the end of the year; and more than 40% of enterprise respondents said they intend to implement integrated SD-WAN solutions acquired by communications service providers.

What makes Nuage Networks SD-WAN unique is everything can be done through a single application program interface (API). Users can define a template, make an API request and let the platform do the rest. Nuage Networks SD-WAN is a new way of abstracting the network complexity from what the user wants. The platform has built-in capabilities, which can be optimized to add customers to the TELUS network swiftly and capture new customers outside the TELUS network.

Telus isn’t the only telecommunications network to collaborate with Nuage Networks for its SDN solutions. Several global providers seeking to automate and advance their WAN connections have contracted with Nuage Networks, including BT, China Telecom, Telefonica and Telia. “Nuage Networks has become a leader in helping service providers deliver fully automated and self-service SD-WAN solutions to enterprise customers who are looking to connect their users quickly and securely to applications in private and public clouds,” said Sunil Khandekar, CEO and founder of Nuage Networks.

“Our platform is present in the world’s largest carrier-grade networks and is being deployed as a complete overlay that can serve as a natural extension of customers’ existing L2 and L3 MPLS VPN and other WAN service offerings to remote sites. We are the only vendor that offers a single SDN automation platform for the datacenter, WAN and public cloud – providing operational simplification, agility and significant cost savings across the multiple cloud-based services currently offered by these providers,” he added.

CSG International extends with Charter

CSG International Expands and Extends Relationship with Charter Four More Years.

CSG Systems International, Inc. announced that it will expand and extend its agreement with Charter Communications (NASDAQ: CHTR) through December 31, 2021.

Charter is a leading broadband communications company and the second largest cable operator in the United States. In 2016, the company merged with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, creating a single entity, Spectrum, under the Charter umbrella. CSG’s contract extension with Charter streamlines all existing billing and customer care contracts with Time Warner and Bright House into a single Charter contract. Under the new contract, CSG will continue to provide a comprehensive set of customer care and billing solutions. In addition, Charter will deploy CSG Workforce Express for field service management, scheduling, dispatch, automation and mobile technician support.

“Charter continues to expand its award-winning Spectrum brand by rapidly bringing innovative, consumer friendly solutions to market,” said Mike Ciszek, Senior Vice President, Billing Strategy and Operations for Charter Communications. “Charter has successfully partnered with CSG for more than 20 years in our pursuit of delivering an exceptional customer experience to our consumers and we are pleased to extend and expand our relationship.”

“CSG is proud of earning the right to broadly serve Charter as they deliver an exceptional customer experience with every single Spectrum interaction,” said Brian Shepherd, president of Broadband, Cable and Satellite for CSG International. “CSG’s people, products and investments are focused on enabling companies like Charter to deliver innovative products and services and a personalized and relevant customer experience. We have an unwavering commitment to help our clients not only compete, but thrive in this fiercely competitive and dynamic marketplace.”

Cisco announces intent to acquire Observable Networks

Cisco Announces Intent to Acquire Observable Networks.

The ability to dramatically improve visibility, security and response capabilities across an entire IT surface, including highly distributed branch environments and public cloud infrastructures, is becoming increasingly important as companies and organizations continue their digital transformation. With this in mind, I am pleased to announce Cisco’s intent to acquire Observable Networks, a privately held software company headquartered in St. Louis. Observable Networks provides cloud-native network forensics security applications delivered as a service.

Observable Networks’ technology is based on dynamic behavioral modeling of all devices on the network. Observable Networks’ solutions provide security analysts with the ability to gain real-time situational awareness of all users, devices and traffic on the network, whether in the data center or the cloud. Its cloud-native machine learning techniques for device modeling identifies insider and external threats faster and more accurately. This design supports cloud environments and enables turn-key activation for customers using Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.

Together, Cisco and Observable Networks will extend our Stealthwatch solution into the cloud with highly scalable behavior analytics and comprehensive visibility. On the heels of the unveiling of our new intent-based network, this acquisition reaffirms Cisco’s commitment to providing unparalleled security solutions for our customers and partners.

The acquisition of Observable Networks supports Cisco’s strategic transition toward software-centric solutions. We look forward to welcoming the Observable Networks team to the Security Business Group led by David Ulevitch. We expect the Observable Networks acquisition to be completed in the first quarter of fiscal year 2018.

SK Telecom commercializes NFV MANO platform named ‘T-MANO’

SK Telecom commercializes NFV MANO platform named ‘T-MANO’.

SK Telecom announced that it commercialized T-MANO, an NFV MANO (Network Functions Virtualization Management and Orchestration) platform that performs integrated management and orchestration of virtualized network equipment and software.

*NFV MANO (network functions virtualization management and orchestration), also called MANO, is an architectural framework for managing and orchestrating virtualized network functions (VNFs) and other software components. The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) Industry Specification Group (ISG NFV) defined the MANO architecture to facilitate the deployment and connection of services as they are decoupled from dedicated physical devices and moved to virtual machines (VMs).

T-MANO has been optimized to SK Telecom’s network environment based on the specifications set by the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) Industry Specification Group (ISG NFV).

Prior to the development of T-MANO, the company had to develop, build and operate a separate NFV management platform for each different network equipment provider due to the fact that their NFV equipment were built on different specifications depending on the manufacturer.

Through T-MANO, SK Telecom can more efficiently utilize its virtualized network equipment by managing service quality and data traffic in an integrated manner regardless of equipment manufacturer, while improving the overall service quality by responding flexibly to service failures/errors. The company can also significantly reduce the time required to set up new equipment to provide a new service as it can upgrade the whole system at once as opposed to the past where it had to upgrade each and every system separately.

Moreover, SK Telecom expects T-MANO to help expand telecommunications infrastructure ecosystem by opening up the Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) of T-MANO so that anyone can use it to build virtualized network equipment or software.

The company will first apply T-MANO to its virtualized VoLTE (HD Voice) routers and then expand its application to virtualized LTE Evolved Packet Core (EPC) and additional equipment including MMS Server. According to SK Telecom, in 2017, virtualized EPC will take up around 80 percent of newly deployed EPC. And from 2019 the company will only deploy virtualized EPC.

Meanwhile, SK Telecom has been leading the field of NFV technologies by commercializing an international standard-based NFV system orchestrator (named T OVEN) in 2015, and applying NFV technologies to its base station equipment in September 2016. The company is also taking an active part in global standardization efforts: Early this year, its two core technologies of T-MANO have been reflected in ETSI’s standards.

“With the commercialization of T-MANO, SK Telecom secures the basis for accelerating the application of NFV technologies to provide better services for customers,” said Choi Seung-won, Senior Vice President and Head of Infrastructure Strategy Office. “We will continue to develop NFV technologies and accumulate operational knowhow for virtualized networks to thoroughly prepare for the upcoming era of 5G.”

Ericsson modernizes real-time charging for VNPT

Ericsson modernizes real-time charging for VNPT in Vietnam.

VNPT, a leading telecom operator in Vietnam, has chosen Ericsson as a strategic partner to modernize its charging and business support system. The modernization will enable service convergence and advanced charging capabilities, and improve the user experience for VNPT’s 40 million pre-paid and post-paid subscribers. The new system will also reduce operational costs and lay the foundation for the operator’s transformation to a digital enterprise.

The Ericsson Charging System is replacing VNPT’s legacy infrastructure, and the contract includes a backend IT peripheral system that will speed up the deployment and migration. The backend system will simplify integration of existing IT applications, taking full advantage of the new charging features and providing a flexible platform for VNPT to deploy new and innovative services.

With the Ericsson Charging System in service, VNPT’s subscribers will be able to request and update account information in real-time and automatically get notifications on costs, balances, and bonuses. The system will also give VNPT a better understanding of subscriber behavior and make it possible to rapidly create personalized offers, for example charging individual subscribers for bandwidth or specific services.

Nguyen Nam Long, General Manager, VNPT Network, says: “Ericsson’s modernization of our charging system gives us the agility needed to meet the changing needs of our subscribers who expect greater control, personalization and flexibility. It also helps us prepare for the introduction of 4G and makes it easier to further develop our service offering.”

VNPT has got a license to operate a 4G network in Vietnam and has been investing in 4G network infrastructure. The Ericsson Charging System will be put in service by VNPT during the fourth quarter 2017, allowing VNPT to launch the 4G services on this new platform.

Denis Brunetti, Head of Ericsson Vietnam and Myanmar, says: “VNPT and Ericsson have a close collaboration. We continuously introduce new and advanced technology in VNPT’s network and the Ericsson Charging System will reduce the overall service management and service delivery costs. It will also enable VNPT to increase subscriber satisfaction and to capitalize on new business opportunities.”

The Ericsson Charging System is an award-winning, scalable and flexible online charging system with a strong focus on user-experience. Ericsson’s leadership in real-time charging is substantiated by implementations for more than 200 customers managing around 2.1 billion subscribers worldwide.

AT&T Investing up to $200 Million in ONAP Venture Capital Fund

AT&T Investing up to $200 Million in Venture Capital Fund.

AT&T* has committed to investing up to $200 million in a venture capital fund as part of its ongoing effort to develop solutions to the toughest technology challenges. AT&T will work with Coral’s Communications Industry Platform (CIP) team to identify and invest in start-up companies focused on connected services and platforms.

“This investment is part of our push to address the needs of global service providers,” said Andre Fuetsch, chief technology officer and president of AT&T Labs. “We look forward to collaborating with Coral and other CIP members to find – and even create – startup companies to build disruptive technologies to solve these challenges.”

“The CIP solutions are targeted at large, move-the-needle opportunities initiated by our strategic collaborators,” said Yuval Almog, chairman and founder of Coral Group. “We are pleased to welcome AT&T to the CIP.”

The fund will invest in technologies that run on the Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP). ONAP is an operating system for software-defined networks. It was born of a merger between a platform created in AT&T Labs and an existing effort in open source. It is being used to manage the company’s own cloud network. ONAP is now an open source platform hosted by the Linux Foundation. It is quickly becoming the standard for virtualized networks around the world.

AT&T and Coral will identify additional companies to invest in the fund. The CIP members can pool their resources to create innovations to address vital problems.

This investment represents AT&T’s latest innovation program, including AT&T Labs and the AT&T Foundry innovation centers. The centers were launched in 2011 in part to work closely with the startup and open source communities.

Nokia completes acquisition of Comptel

Nokia completes acquisition of Comptel.

Nokia announced the successful completion of its acquisition of Comptel Corporation, a Finland-based telecommunications software company. The acquisition was announced February 9, 2017.

The acquisition advances Nokia’s strategy to build a standalone software business at scale by expanding and strengthening its software portfolio and go-to-market capabilities. Comptel bolsters Nokia’s software portfolio by adding capabilities that help digital service providers bring new communications services to market faster, master the orchestration of services and order flows, capture data-in-motion and refine decision-making.

When combined with Nokia’s Operations Support Systems (OSS), Business Support Systems (BSS), analytics, security and cloud technology, Nokia will be able to offer the software intelligence and real-time network information to deliver better digital experiences and operations in a cloud environment.

Redknee Unified signs with Smart in the Philippines

Redknee Unified Deployed at Smart as Customer Demand Quickly Grows in the Philippines.

Redknee Solutions Inc. announced that Smart Communications (Smart) in the Philippines has awarded Redknee a services and support contract.

Redknee Unified is an agile, flexible, and scalable converged billing, charging, and customer care platform that allows service providers to enhance their competitiveness and maximize value by quickly launching new revenue streams and service offerings with multi-channel customer support.

Redknee Unified provides a capable adaptive quota solution allowing customers to access data services on multiple devices at the same time, delivering an optimal user experience and an efficient use of resources. For Redknee, this project highlights its ability to deliver a major upgrade quickly, while providing the flexibility and services needed to meet the market needs.

With Redknee Unified, Smart can benefit from improved time to market, by adding tool-based testing for product configuration and real-time configuration changes. Redknee’s innovative multi-campus solution is deployed with geo-redundancy, enabling Smart to support its rapidly growing subscriber base with high quality and resilient backend.

AscoTLC selects Nuage Networks SDN and SD-WAN

AscoTLC Selects Nuage Networks SDN and SD-WAN Technology to Offer Both Telco and Cloud Services.

Nuage Networks, the Nokia venture focused on software-defined networking (SDN) solutions, announced its newest customer, Italian cloud services provider AscoTLC. AscoTLC is another example of a service provider offering automated cloud services for both SD-WAN and traditional datacenter SDN through the Nuage Networks platform. Nuage Networks SDN technologies enrich AscoTLC’s current infrastructure with an end-to-end common overlay network starting from the cloud and ending at Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) at customer WAN sites. AscoTLC was able to deploy the project with integration services from its partner, Texor Srl, as well as Nuage Networks.

AscoTLC’s innovative path to cloud services is possible with Nuage Networks Virtualized Services Platform (VSP) running the Nuage Networks Virtualized Cloud Services (VCS) and Nuage Networks Virtualized Network Services (VNS). This comprehensive solution is independent from any network infrastructure and topology, any virtualization environment, any cloud orchestrator and supports an open CPE platform, including the ability to integrate third party virtualized network functions. Moreover, the Nuage Networks architecture uses the same SDN controller for both datacenter and WAN sites. It gives AscoTLC a completely open architecture, greater customization and business agility for customers, and the ability to provide lower cost, next-generation VPN services. Through the Nuage Networks VNS (SD-WAN service), customers will have the ability to define forwarding policies, quality of service, security, traffic shaping and rate limiting policies. AscoTLC expects around 1,000 customer sites will be connected to their new fiber optic backbone running these next-generation cloud services within two years.

“As a market early adopter and innovator, we tested several SDN and SD-WAN options and chose Nuage Networks as a like-minded visionary offering a completely open architecture that can work on any cloud management platform,” says Stefano Ducati, COO, AscoTLC. “Nuage Networks gives us the business agility to continue providing our customers with the enhanced on-demand services they expect. This gives us a distinct advantage in our highly competitive market.”