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BCE 2016: Vodafone to Make Waves With Its 'Ocean' Virtualization Strategy

Ray Le Maistre
5/4/2016
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With its £19 billion (US$27.6 billion) Project Spring network investment project now complete, Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) has made its virtualization strategy, codenamed "Ocean," its top priority, according to the operator's head of SDN and NFV David Amzallag, who will update the industry on how Ocean has made waves within the company during the past year during his keynote presentation at the Big Communications Event (BCE) on May 24. (See Light Reading to Host 3rd Annual Big Communications Event in Austin, Texas.)

Light Reading broke the news of Amzallag's appointment in June last year, since when he has been focused on developing a group-wide virtualization strategy for the global operator. (See Vodafone Hires NFV Specialist to Develop Group Virtualization Strategy.)

And the industry can expect some uncompromising truths when Amzallag takes to the podium in Austin, Texas: He has previously rocked the boat with his analysis of vendor developments related to next generation network management and service orchestration and tells Light Reading he is preparing to give "an honest update" on virtualization developments at Vodafone. (See Vodafone Calls for End to Five Nines and HP Defends NFV Smarts After Vodafone Attack.)

"We have made a lot of progress and are working very differently within Vodafone to make this strategy work -- we have made a lot of progress and are further advanced than we had expected," he says, noting that there is now unprecedented collaboration between the operations, engineering and technology teams within the service provider.

The Vodafone man says he will also talk about the significant changes to the way the operator engages with its suppliers. "I plan to emphasize how we have developed a very different relationship structure with our vendors of all types," including "legacy vendors, startups and very young companies," he notes.

Amzallag is just one of a number of senior service provider executives delivering keynote presentations during the opening sessions at BCE: Industry leaders from AT&T, Deutsche Telekom, Facebook and Masergy will also share their latest strategic developments that morning. For the full list of speakers, panel sessions and details of the NFV Live Interoperability Demo that will take place on the show floor, check out the Big Communications Event (BCE) website.

— Ray Le Maistre, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

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AlokT518
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AlokT518,
User Rank: Moderator
5/25/2016 | 8:18:59 PM
Any updates on "Ocean"?
Didn't see any follow-up coverage by Light Reading on this topic. Are there any updates?
Gabriel Brown
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Gabriel Brown,
User Rank: Light Sabre
5/4/2016 | 7:03:50 AM
Re: Unprecedented collaboration
It would be an under-statement to say this is a change in process. Vodafone pioneered reverse-auction procurement, partly on the basis that products such as base stations or microwave backhaul were so standardized as to be more or less commodities.

A collaborative development model is going to stretch Vodafone's capabilities -- perhaps more so than other Tier 1 operators. It will be good for the company.
Ray@LR
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Ray@LR,
User Rank: Blogger
5/3/2016 | 4:20:50 PM
Re: Unprecedented collaboration
David has a lot to say about the relationship between Vodafone and its vendors and also between the vendors themselves... he talked  last year about fostering a new working environment that would boost collaboration and help Vodafone make faster progress than would normally be possible and it would appear he has managed to achieve that.
cnwedit
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cnwedit,
User Rank: Light Beer
5/3/2016 | 3:56:45 PM
Unprecedented collaboration
That's an interesting way to characterize what is happening between vendors and network operators today. It takes incredible candor on the latter's part and a different kind of engagement - and risk - for the former. 

It's also going to be a great topic of conversation at BCE. 
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