Iona signs Artix deal at O2


20 Jul 2005

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Middleware firm Iona Technologies has signed up O2 Group to its Artix systems integration platform.

The network operator — a long-time user of Iona’s Orbix software — will now use Artix to integrate new service management and support systems within its existing network infrastructure. The firm said Artix would allow it to rapidly deploy new systems and reduce its reliance on proprietary software.

News of the deal, whose value was not disclosed, will be welcomed by a shareholder base disappointed by the company’s second-quarter results last week, which saw revenues falling short of expectations. The company pinned the blame on three key US software deals falling through.

Artix is known in middleware circles as an enterprise service bus (ESB) — a software platform that knits together several islands of middleware.

O2 UK is to deploy it on two important applications. The first will connect the company’s existing network management system to a newly deployed helpdesk system. The second will underpin a new SMS-based support service for O2 UK’s field engineers. Artix is intended to replace legacy solutions that are costly to maintain and provide O2 with a flexible and reusable solution that can be deployed and easily adapted.

“In the telecommunications industry, the ability to respond to market trends and customer demands is crucial to ongoing success. We need flexible operational support systems in order to preserve the true business agility that helps us stay ahead of a rapidly evolving market,” explains Carolyn Smithson, head of operational support systems (OSS) strategy within O2’s technology division. “Artix is a powerful and extensible ESB solution that gives us the flexibility we require, without compromising the mission-critical nature of our OSS systems and without saddling us with an expensive proprietary solution.”

Peter Zotto, CEO, Iona Technologies, said: “We have a solid reputation for solving the critical integration requirements and extreme performance demands of telecommunications companies while helping them achieve significant cost reductions and make their IT environments more agile.”

By Brian Skelly