Creating the world's leading independent vendor for the Telecom Service Layer

Belfast, (PresseBox) - Aepona, a global provider of telecoms software products and services headquartered in Belfast, United Kingdom and Appium, a leading technology vendor offering Telecom Application Server and Service Creation Environment products based in Malmö, Sweden, today announced that they will merge to create the world's leading independent vendor for the Telecom Service Layer.

The merger will create a single business, operating under the Aepona identity, with the product breadth and operational scale to expand its share of the global Service Delivery Platform market, which is worth $1.4Bn in 2007 and is forecast to reach $3.2Bn by 2011, according to the analyst firm OSS Observer. The merged company will be headquartered in Belfast with the Malmö facility continuing to serve as a development centre and regional sales office.

"There are a number of compelling reasons behind the decision to combine the strengths of Aepona and Appium" said Gilbert Little, Chairman of Aepona's Board of Directors. "Service Providers globally are set to invest heavily in this segment to satisfy the demand for rich, converged consumer and enterprise services. The two companies have complementary products, customers and channels to market, and the combined entity has the scale, intellectual assets and sales and marketing fire-power to fully capitalise on this exciting market opportunity."

New Aepona brings a complete portfolio of Service Layer products to market, including Telecom Web Services framework, Service Broker, Telecom Application Server, Service Creation Environment and Convergent Network Gateway. The products will be marketed under Aepona's existing Universal Service Platform (USP) banner. As well as the USP product family, new Aepona will continue with its strategy of bringing to market profit-generating applications enabled by the USP, and the company's ability to nurture and support the 3rd-party application developer ecosystem is significantly enhanced by the merger.

The combined company has a strong international base of Tier 1 Service Provider customers, including the France Telecom/Orange Group, BT, Sprint, Telus, Telefonica, KPN, Bharti, Telmex and Vimpelcom. The two companies have previously worked together in delivering end-to-end solutions to customers such as France Telecom/Orange, demonstrating the complementary nature of the existing Aepona and Appium products.

Eric Lundquist, CEO of Appium, commented: "Merging with Aepona is a natural step in the evolution of Appium's business, and I am very pleased that the company is entering this new exciting phase. Customers of both companies will benefit from a more complete solution offering from a single entity, and the combined portfolio gives the merged company a much stronger proposition within the Service Layer market, enhancing our competitive position which will consequently drive significant revenue synergies."

"This deal makes a lot of sense for both companies", said Jean-Charles Doineau, Service Infrastructure Practice Leader at leading research firm, Ovum. "Whilst it is clear that there is a significant and growing market opportunity for independent software vendors within the Service Platform segment, this can only be addressed by companies with real credibility in the marketplace. Ovum has been tracking the progress of both Aepona and Appium over the past several years, and we have been impressed by both companies' ability to directly serve the needs of demanding Tier 1 Service Providers. Now that they are together, I expect the combined entity to be an even more formidable force in the market over the coming years".

Aepona Ltd

Headquartered in the UK with regional offices across the world, Aepona is at the forefront of the evolution towards better, more service-rich communications networks. The company is a leading provider of application-led solutions, products and expert services to telecommunications operators globally, allowing them to rapidly deploy profitable new services across fixed-line, mobile and SIP/IMS networks.
Aepona possesses a unique combination of expertise in both telecoms infrastructure and IT, and its solutions have been chosen by Tier 1 operators such as France Telecom/Orange, KPN, Sprint, E-Plus, Vimpelcom, Eircom and Bridge Mobile Alliance

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