Ericsson ‘best possible platform’ for CENX, Nan Chen tells Capacity

Ericsson ‘best possible platform’ for CENX, Nan Chen tells Capacity

Nan Chen glasses.jpg

Ericsson is buying 100% of CENX for an undisclosed price and all its 185 employees will join the Swedish company.

Ericsson said the acquisition would boost its portfolio of operations support systems (OSS) with vendor-agnostic service assurance and closed-loop automation capability.

Nan Chen, the co-founder of CENX in 2009 and now the company’s executive vice chairman, told Capacity last night: “Ericsson provides the best possible worldwide platform and resources for CENX to scale globally.” Chen is also president and director of MEF, the former Metro Ethernet Forum.

CENX started as a carrier ethernet neutral exchange – hence the name. However, in order to fully serve exchange customers, CENX developed its own software to automate the processes – and in 2012 it switched course to become exclusively a software vendor.

“We have pioneered a new generation of cloud native service assurance solution that is foundation for autonomous networking – the ultimate goal,” Chen told Capacity.

“CENX’s service assurance combined with Ericsson dynamic orchestration, a complete suite of lifecycle service orchestration (LSO) as [it is] known in the industry, provides an industry-leading closed-loop automation, and has potential to transform the industry in 5G, wireline and virtualisation.”

Ericsson has been a minority shareholder in CENX – along with BDC Capital, Cross Creek Advisors, DCM Ventures, Highland Capital Partners, Mesirow Financial, Mistral Venture Partners and Verizon Ventures. “The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals,” said CENX and Ericsson.

Ericsson said it “has a market leading position in NFV [network functions virtualisation] and orchestration. This capability will be further enhanced with CENX’s closed-loop automation and service assurance capabilities.”

It said that “telecom operators need to leverage network virtualization and orchestrate and automate network slices” in order to benefit from 5G. Mats Karlsson, head of Ericsson’s OSS business, said: “Dynamic orchestration is crucial in 5G-ready virtualised networks. By bringing CENX into Ericsson, we can continue to build upon the strong competitive advantage we have started as partners.”

The Swedish company said its global sales and delivery presence, along with its strong R&D, “will also create economies of scale in the CENX portfolio and help Ericsson to offer in-house solutions for OSS automation and assurance”.