Industry organisations i3forum and OVCC merge

The IP-based wholesale industry’s i3forum has expanded its interests to cover visual communications by merging with the Open Visual Communications Consortium (OVCC).

The combined organisation will also be known as i3forum and 23 telecoms companies and equipment vendors have already agreed to become founder members.

“Bringing OVCC and i3forum together creates an organisation with a broad scope and a unique end-to-end capability that encompasses the underlying IPX network and services such as unified communication,” said Philippe Millet, i3forum president and vice president of partnerships at Orange.

“It is the perfect response to the evolution of the industry, and will allow members and industry stakeholders to look more broadly at challenges and opportunities, foster new ecosystems and enable the transformation of the industry.”

The original i3forum was formed in 2007 and announced at the first International Telecoms Week in 2008. It had 55 members before the merger, of which 23 have already agreed to join the expanded organisation – including AT&T, Deutsche Telekom, Orange, PCCW Global, SFR, Tata Communications, Telefónica, Telia Carrier, Telenor, Telstra and TI Sparkle.

The OVCC is a group of global video exchange providers, network providers and equipment manufacturers that united to expand video communications and simplify video calls. Founding members include AT&T, BCS Global, BT, Orange and Polycom.

Clive Sawkins, president of the OVCC, said: “The merged organisation will combine efforts and resources to help service providers, carriers and enterprises deploy and consume services safely across network boundaries, between public and private clouds, and over the public internet.”

The next annual conference of i3forum will take place next week in Chicago in conjunction with this year’s International Telecoms Week.

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