Note: To support questions from enterprise buyers and private investors that are looking at Telecom Expense Management and the greater Communications Lifecycle Management world, Blue Hill is starting a monthly review of the key announcements made in this space from companies including, but not limited to: 2-markets, 4telecomhelp, ACCOUNTabill, Advantix, AMI Strategies, Asentinel, Avotus, Calero, Cass Information Systems (NASDAQ: CASS), Cimpl (formerly Etelesolv), Comview, EZwim, GSGTelco, IBM Global Services (NYSE: IBM), ICOMM, MDSL, mindWireless, MOBI, Mobichord, Mobile Solutions Services, MobilSense, MTS (NASDAQ: MTSL), Nebula, NetPlus, Network Control, One Source Communications, Softeligent, Tangoe (NASDAQ: TNGO), Telesoft, TNX, Valicom, vCom, and Visage.
Communications Lifecycle Management news items that have gotten Blue Hill’s attention in June 2017 include announcements from Calero, Ezwim, Nebula, Tangoe, Telesoft, and vCom.
On June 22, Calero announced the release of Calero VeraSMART v12 with updated features and functionality to improve usability and productivity within the platform. VeraSMART v12 includes not only an updated user interface but also Calero’s guided analytics solution, InSight Analytics, for dispute management, inventory management, and invoice management within a visualization and scenario planning environment.
Calero’s platform updates are aimed at enabling greater visibility and control over IT, cloud, and communications usage and costs for the “increasingly complex communications environment.”
Blue Hill has previously observed that the Telecom Expense Management (TEM) industry is expanding to include additional IT categories, and this trend is only continuing as the scope of IT assets and services under management is broadening. Calero’s continued platform updates more effectively prepare the company to offer solutions and services geared toward the future needs of IT rather than simply the TEM demands of the past.
On June 22, Ezwim announced that the company has again passed its annual external audit to achieve ISO27001 certification. Ezwim commented that the company will continue to prioritize and develop its security frameworks to provide multiple lines of defense against security threats.
Blue Hill believes that ISO27001 certification provides a key differentiator through Ezwim’s global support of enterprise mobility data. Ezwim’s long-held history with this certification speaks to its qualifications in understanding the data residency and governance issues that are important to consider in managing both personally-identifiable information and sensitive corporate data.
On June 12, Nebula announced the launch of its Telecom Expense and Lifecycle Management Integration Hub, which allows clients to integrate third party IT and business applications within a single cloud platform.
Nebula’s cloud-based OneView platform is powered by always-on Microsoft Azure cloud services and offers a single portal for IT lifecycle management. The Integration Hub creates a single source of truth that can be accessed throughout the enterprise and brings together telecom, IT, and application data.
As TEM evolves to include additional management categories such as cloud and software licenses and next generation devices, a centralized platform that can serve as a single source of truth for the enterprise becomes necessary. Blue Hill notes that Nebula is preparing its platform to support the future of TEM by offering integration with third party IT applications and business services.
On June 16, Tangoe announced that Marlin Equity Partners has completed its take-private acquisition of Tangoe. Marlin Equity Partners currently owns Asentinel and will merge the two TEM companies to create a global superpower for technology lifecycle management.
Blue Hill covered this acquisition in greater detail in a recent report, in which we commented that Tangoe and Asentinel are immediately positioned as a leading global power in TEM. The combined company’s assets position Marlin Equity Partners to address the next generation of TEM, which Blue Hill calls IT Enterprise Management.
On June 27, Telesoft announced the appointment of Daman Wood to the company as Chief Operating Officer. Wood joins the firm with more than 20 years experience in technology services and telecommunications, most recently operating as Vice President of Service Delivery at Vonage. Telesoft commented that Wood’s appointment will enable the company to improve its managed services offerings.
Blue Hill notes that Telesoft’s investments in managed services and support speak to the larger trend for TEM vendors to offer high-touch service within a unified mobility platform. Blue Hill will be curious to see how Wood’s vision plays out over the latter half of this year as Telesoft continues to scale its business and invest in its customer relationships.
On June 8, vCom announced the release of vManager 7.1, an update to the company’s cloud-based software platform. The release provides additional functionality for planning and procurement, operations, and financial management. vCom has also created a Software Adoption Team to provide dedicated support and training for vManager.
Version 7.1 includes a rebuilt Document Center to help IT and finance better manage contracts, documents, and project planning. Blue Hill notes that this capability will be important as IT is increasingly seeking to manage cloud and software licenses and contracts within an existing TEM platform.
Additionally, version 7.1 includes an updated Dashboard to provide a comprehensive analysis of IT spend for wireline, mobile collaboration, and cloud expenses. Blue Hill notes that a focus on bringing cloud into vCom’s existing software platform demonstrates that the company is evolving to support the next generation of TEM.