As if that’s not enough, Microsoft is also facilitating collaboration between partner organizations so that partners are helping each other too. This Partner-Microsoft-Partner trifecta provides a unique sort of leverage. By way of illustration, on February 15th 2010 Redknee announced its partnership with Microsoft. By February 2011, Redknee announced “Multiple Converged Billing Deals” thanks in particular to its Microsoft partnership. In July of this year, at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference 2011, Redknee and global SI firm,Tech Mahindra announced a worldwide partnership – which sources within Redknee and Microsoft say “would not have happened without Microsoft” and seems that relationship is also starting to bear fruit.

"We remain very excited about our growing relationship with Microsoft.” Said Lucas Skoczkowski, CEO of Redknee, “Through our strategic alliance, Redknee is achieving the benefits of delivering a superior software platform, in conjunction with Microsoft Dynamics and SQL Server solutions suite; is advancing our cloud offering; and expanding our system integrated go-to-market capability. We look to offer more value to our global telecom and IT service provider customers by leveraging Microsoft's commitment to the telecom market, its ongoing investment in research and development and its global partner ecosystem."

C. Dewey Forrester, Jr., Senior Director, at Microsoft adds, “It’s great to see the growing momentum with our ISV partnerships in the OSS/BSS and Customer Care space. Microsoft ISV partners are a taking a very innovative approach to addressing the most complex and evolving demands of the communications service providers. This supports our shared industry vision by empowering service providers to deliver on their long-term strategies of enabling breadth of new profitable services with a powerful billing and customer care platforms.“

The “mashability” aspect comes into play with Microsoft’s deep involvement with Standards Development Organizations (SDOs) and its firm embrace of interoperability on a product level. Microsoft is actively contributing to over a dozen SDOs in the Communications and Media Industry. On the product level, Microsoft’s Open Specifications and Interoperability Program provide developers with specific access to create custom, vertical solutions.

“The focus on the developer,” says Eric Troup, Microsoft’s CTO of Worldwide Communications and Media Industries, “ Complex BSS/OSS and Service Delivery Solutions built by partners typically leverage multiple Microsoft products such as Dynamics CRM, SQL Server, Windows Server/Hyper-V, SharePoint, .NET (Workflow, Presentation, Communications) Framework, Windows Azure, & SQL Azure. Microsoft facilitates integration between all of these platforms and products through open published specifications and adherence to industry standards.”

In the end, Microsoft and its customers receives or deserves best-of-breed vertical CSP solutions built on Microsoft platforms and its partners get to stand on the shoulders of Microsoft to break into some of the biggest and best carriers in the world. Not a bad deal if you ask me and it might be just what the doctor, in this case the OSS/BSS industry, ordered.

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