Policy + charging

Cisco Tangos With Tazz

Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) leapt into the policy management market with both feet today by striking an OEM deal to rebadge technology from policy control specialist Tazz Networks Inc. (See Cisco Rebadges Tazz.)

The arrangement won't cause any major shocks, as the two companies already have a close working relationship, most notably at BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA), where Tazz is one of Cisco's partners in the metro nodes of the carrier's next-generation network, the 21CN. (See BT's 21CN: Metro Partners Under Wraps .)

But the deal is significant for two reasons. It gives Cisco a position in one of the hottest emerging technology areas, policy management, which will become increasingly vital to service providers seeking to effectively, and profitably, manage the delivery of multiple IP services to broadband customers. (See Policy Control Heats Up.)

Cisco is calling its product the Broadband Policy Manager, or Cisco BPM.

The move gives the IP equipment giant an instant policy management story, something that some of its key rivals such as Alcatel (NYSE: ALA; Paris: CGEP:PA) and Redback Networks Inc. , but particularly Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR) with its SDX-300 (a Unisphere product), already have in their marketing arsenals. (See Alcatel Launches Service Manager, Redback Intros Policy Manager, and Juniper Boosts IPTV.)

Cisco says only that Tazz's technology is "a component of the Cisco Broadband Policy Manager" that is "designed to enable deployment of advanced applications over IP Next Generation Networks." In an email response to a request for comment, Cisco added: "Tazz is one of many Cisco OEM partners contributing to the development of the Cisco IP Next Generation Network Architecture."

The arrangement also gives Tazz, a small specialist that has been developing systems in this field for some years, a major foot in carriers' doors, market credibility, and, reckons the company, the potential for greater insight into operators' plans.

"For Tazz, this will open a lot of Tier 1 doors we couldn't have opened ourselves, and we expect to see customers and revenues from this relationship very soon," says Tazz VP of marketing Chad Dunn. "It'll also give us visibility into the carriers' roadmaps and the way they see certain standards and strategies, and allows us to adjust our future product development accordingly."

That upswing in business opportunities also means Tazz will need to raise further working capital: Dunn says the company, which has been growing fast recently, will "be going out to raise more money later this quarter." Its most recent funding round was in May 2005. (See Tazz Pockets Another $6M, Tazz Adds VPs, and Tazz Goes to Scotland.)

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materialgirl 12/5/2012 | 4:04:46 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz CSCO also just signed what seems to be a giant OEM deal with OPSW for network management. Do these two deals portend a theme?
OldPOTS 12/5/2012 | 4:04:42 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz Especially at Lightspeed does this put ALA (SSC) vs CSCO (BPM)?
Are they complimentary?
Who's the integrator?

willy wonka 12/5/2012 | 4:04:41 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz what ever happened to dan lowe? he's not even on the BoD now? wasn't he the founder?

Did the VCs boot him or did he take his $$ and move on?

OldPOTS 12/5/2012 | 4:04:41 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz I would also suggest re-reviewing the Webinar Archives for 2/15 and listen closely;

"Understanding the Role of IMS and Non-IMS Applications in SP Next Generation Networks*"

Sponsors: Cisco Systems

OldPOTS 12/5/2012 | 4:04:40 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz Since some of the ALA SSC functionality is being integrated into various Alcatel metro node products, namely the 7450 Ethernet switch, the 7750 Service Router. I was intrigued whether the ALA boxes would be integrated with the CSCO BPM.

Any info out there?

paolo.franzoi 12/5/2012 | 4:04:40 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz
SA is a component supplier to the Lightspeed network. Alcatel is the integrator. Much of the STB integration work is actually with Microsoft's middleware.

alchemy 12/5/2012 | 4:04:37 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz If you look at the CableLabs list of qualified policy servers, you'll find:


You have an even bigger list when you look at who is participating in 3GPP and ETSI TISPAN where major wireless players are building policy servers. The top five MSOs aren't deploying policy servers for cable in 2006. Most IMS solutions are vertical where the vendor providing the IMS core is also supplying the policy server component. It kind of begs the question of what kind of exit strategy Camiant and CableMatrix have. There is only one Cisco.
digits 12/5/2012 | 4:04:36 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz A couple of observations.

Cisco might not have an OEM deal with Camiant, but Camiant is Cisco's policy server partner in the cable/MSO market.

Also, you're right about the IMS world, but it's early days yet. As that market matures so it's more likely that the big players - Alcatel, Ericsson, Lucent, Siemens etc etc - will integrate third party technology, either of their own will or under pressure from service providers.
Ishmeal 12/5/2012 | 4:04:34 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz Based on what I read on the website (so who knows) the taaz stuff is supposed to have agents that talk to other vendors gear pretty easily. They mention CLI, XML, RADIUS, SNMP and I think COPS. They also talk about pre-canned integrations but nothing on the ALA gear.
OldPOTS 12/5/2012 | 4:04:32 AM
re: Cisco Tangos With Tazz Ray,
The reason I raised the question is that ALA has acquired several companies to obtain the SSC functionality and Video management. The names for the acquired and functionality have been changed to protect the not so innocent.

I believe their initial goal (several years ago) was to move triple play forward, so they later acquiesced to MSFT IPTV manager. But now CSCO comes along. Is ALA going to acquiesced again, and is SBC/AT&T driving this?

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