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Convergys acquires CEON to tackle telco PLM

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"There are a number of things driving customeres to look at enterprise product catalogs," Champion said. "The biggest thing is simply competition, having to find a way to rollout products and services more quickly."

The main focus of telco PLM is to centralize the many pieces of new service development – including new product definition and modeling, the process of standardizing components into a published service catalog and defining the related configuration and provisioning pieces required to deliver a service to an actual customer. Centralizing and standardizing those processes helps “bring order to the chaotic product management process that is so inherent in carrier’s OSS and BSS environments,” said Yankee Group analyst Ari Banerjee in a statement analyzing the acquisition.

In a recent interview on the prospects for telco PLM, Banerjee said the key for service providers is “to look at other industries and put their manufacturing and product – or in this case service – assembly concepts into action, in particular a centralized point of control as well as more consistent product definitions and structures,” said Banerjee said.

In a report published this spring, Banerjee outlined the key ingredients for a successful telco PLM platform – which he believes is centered around a centralized “enterprise product catalog” -- including a centralized point of control spanning all BSS/OSS systems; different interfaces and process views for different stakeholders; support for the end-to-end product lifecycle; and more.

Ceon was founded in 1999 and is privately held. Its core product is called the Product Control Center and is focused on helping service providers manage and deploy layered product catalogs supporting extended service attributes, complex business rules, multi-user collaboration and more.

The two companies began working together more closely in January with a strategic alliance. Convergys called today’s acquisitions “small but strategic.”

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© 2014 Penton Media Inc.

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