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BEA Extends WebLogic With Telco Buy

Looking to improve the service delivery capabilities in WebLogic, BEA Systems has acquired Incomit, a privately held maker of infrastructure software for telecommunications businesses.

BEA did not make terms of the deal public but said in a statement it will use Incomit's technology to pad the WebLogic Service DeliveryPlatform, BEA's application server software for telcos.

By acquiring Incomit, BEA hopes to provide value to the telco industry, which has had several challenges brought on by mergers and acquisitions and decreasing voice revenues, said Olivier Helleboid, executive vice president of corporate strategy and development at BEA.

Helleboid said the fact that carriers are increasingly providing services, such as e-mail, gaming and various other types of digital content, means they will require additional technological support that the WebLogic platform can provide.

BEA, which derived nearly a quarter of its 2004 revenues from telcos, has some experience in providing software for carriers. Tuxedo, its first telco product, remains the e-commerce middleware of choice for many service providers since BEA acquired it from Bell Labs a decade ago.

The San Jose, Calif., software maker hopes the buy will give it an advantage over rival IBM, which also looks for placement among telcos with its WebSphere Application Server. BEA also competes with Sun Microsystems and open source purveyor JBoss in the application server space, where speedy, reliable run times are used to judge the quality of the software.

Application server vendors are largely pinning their hopes on making money from service-oriented architectures , distributed computing models that allow customers to save money by reusing assets, such as code.

BEA is no exception. The company has a number of SOA and Web service-related projects on tap for 2005.