HONG KONG, April 12, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — MEF members HGC Global Communications (HGC), DCConnect Global, and QLC Chain under the auspices of MEF have successfully collaborated in their MEF Proof-of-Concept (PoC) that leverages MEF Lifecycle Service Orchestration (LSO) APIs with Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) to create Smart Bilaterals for end-to-end ordering, billing and settlement of data services.
As part of the MEF’s new Commercial and Operational framework (W114), this PoC is a key foundational step to demonstrate how we can overcome cross-partner business process integration challenges across the telco service value chain that cost the telecom industry hundreds of millions of dollars annually.
Telecom service providers invest significant amounts on systems and resources for external-facing commercial transactions with their telecom partners. When service providers partner establish a new commercial relationship/bilateral, they usually require customised interfaces to integrate their systems and processes. And this effort needs to be repeated for every bilateral entered.
Even with a smooth integration, these systems of record typically do not have a “Golden Source” for the shared commercial state of the orders and there are considerable inefficiencies throughout the Order-to-Cash value chain. As a result, much time and money is spent on reconciliations, disputed prices or bills, lost orders, and sometimes even legal actions. Worse still is the damage to the commercial relationship.
The MEF 3.0 PoC (130) was raised to demonstrate a viable solution to address “implement once, use many’ process integration for data services. The core of the PoC and the associated in-development-standard MEF W114 are “Smart Bilaterals”. Smart Bilaterals are DLT-based Smart Contract systems that enable an immutable, self-executing commercial state between two or more service providers by establishing a shared commercial state that ensures the correctness of all generated commercial documents; commercial documents are only generated when they conform to the Golden Source.
Utilizing QLC Chain’s Trusted Billing platform that uses standard MEF LSO Sonata APIs and standardisable Smart Bilateral protocols, the partners successfully demonstrated:
- Only a one-time onboarding is required to conduct business with any other service provider on the same network, and
- The automation of the Order-to-Cash value chain for data services transactions in near real time. It is a secure and automated system-to-system integration for ordering based on available published inventory and price, as well as, billing, invoicing and settlement without the need for reconciliation. Each transaction / order is managed end-to-end in near real time.
“Thanks to the great work of this PoC team, we are able to demonstrate the benefits of the combination of DLT and MEF LSO APIs,” said Daniel Bar-Lev, VP Strategic Programs, MEF. “Cost reductions through automation and synchronisation virtually eliminate costly billing errors and process cycle times. Likewise, it opens up new revenue streams to service providers by cost-effectively supporting high volumes of transactions for short-lived services, which are increasingly important in the era of Bandwidth-on-Demand, IoT, NFV/5G, and network slicing.”
“LSO-APIs have enabled a large degree of standardisation and automation in our Lead-to-Order processes. Developing and integrating the DLT-base Smart Bilaterals to our LSO-APIs service chain will enable us to complete the Lead-to-Cash process within seconds. We intend to extend this capability to chain Legato APIs, further enhancing full automation all the way to orchestration, thereby opening up more revenue and go-to-market opportunities. The potential to provide a frictionless and seamless experience for our customers is truly exciting,” said Jacqueline Teo, HGC’s Chief Digital Officer.
Victor Ma, DCConnect Global’s General Manager, added: “Given the pace of service ordering and provisioning have been greatly accelerated by programmable and on-demand network supported by SDN technology, business transformation is now fully facilitated with agility, scalability and automation. While inter-carrier API orchestration is mature with MEF LSO Sonata API standard, we are thrilled to get further evolution on billing and settlement aspect using DLT-based Smart Bilaterals. This MEF PoC 130 has successfully demonstrated the benefits which we believe the federation of carriers would enjoy by getting onboard the Billing platform. It has been a wonderful experience working with QLC Chain and HGC on this groundbreaking Proof-of-Concept.”
“Telecom service providers are very interested on Distributed Ledger Technology and the adoption is accelerating. In summary, our initial outcomes from the PoC demonstrated QLC Chain, the privacy-preserving and high volume chain, is suitable the nature of transactions of telecom services, the PoC 130 will be available for partners to test at an open platform. We are grateful to work with MEF, HGC and DCConnect and will continue to offer production-ready solutions to the industry” said Susan Zhou, Chief Operating Officer of QLC Chain.
Based on the positive outcomes, HGC, DCConnect, QLC and MEF will continue on their joint path to drive DLT-LSO API standards and start bringing on board partners as well as other MEF members to enjoy the benefits of the Smart Bilaterals.
About HGC Global Communications Limited
HGC Global Communications Limited (HGC) is a leading Hong Kong and international fixed-line operator. The company owns an extensive network and infrastructure in Hong Kong and overseas and provides various kinds of services. HGC has 23 overseas offices, with business over 5 continents. It provides telecom infrastructure service to other operators and serves as a service provider to corporate and households. The company provides full-fledged telecom, data centre services, ICT solutions and broadband services for local, overseas, corporate and mass markets. HGC owns and operates an extensive fibre-optic network, five cross-border telecom routes integrated into tier-one telecom operators in mainland China and connects with hundreds of world-class international telecom operators. HGC is one of Hong Kong’s largest Wi-Fi service providers, running over 29,000 Wi-Fi hotspots in Hong Kong. The company is committed to further investing and enriching its current infrastructure and, in parallel, adding on top the latest technologies and developing its infrastructure services and solutions. HGC is a portfolio company of I Squared Capital, an independent global infrastructure investment manager focusing on energy, utilities and transport in North America, Europe and selected fast-growing economies.
To learn more, please visit HGC’s website at: www.hgc.com.hk
About DCConnect Global Limited
DCConnect Global Limited, founded in 2017, is an innovator of on-demand connectivity to global data centers and Cloud Service Providers. DCConnect has developed innovative portal connectivity to global data centers, Cloud Providers and Customer Premises via a comprehensive user interface. This provides users with a scalable, agile, flexible solution allowing users to define via a virtual port to cost effectively turn up or turn down bandwidth within minutes. DCConnect has been awarded the finalist of “Most Innovative NFV/SDN Implementation” in the Telecom Asia Awards 2019. It has also received an award of “MEF3.0 Service Automated Commerce Implementation 2019” in MEF19.
For more information, please visit DCConnect’s website at: www.dcconnectglobal.com
About QLC Chain:
QLC Chain is to resolve the data trust and security problem in the ICT industry.It provides network automation of billing,reconciliation,settlement,payment,custody to telecom operators utilising blockchain technology.
QLC Chain offers telecommunication service providers with inter-carrier connection and financial consultancy services as well.
If you want to join our service provider automation network and get connected with global telecom service providers through seamless and instant ordering, billing and settlement process. Please reach out here.
An industry association of 200 member companies, MEF is driving development of a global federation of network, cloud, and technology providers supporting dynamic, assured, and certified network services that power enterprise digital transformation. MEF 3.0 services are designed to provide an on-demand, cloud-centric experience with user- and application-directed control over network resources and service capabilities. MEF 3.0 services are delivered over automated, virtualized, and interconnected networks powered by LSO, SDN, and NFV. MEF produces service standards, LSO frameworks, LSO APIs, MEF 3.0 Proof of Concept Showcases, and certification programs for services, technologies, and professionals. MEF 3.0 work will enable automated delivery of standardized Carrier Ethernet, Optical Transport, IP, SD-WAN, SASE, and other Layer 4-7 services across multiple provider networks. For more information: https://www.MEF.net and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter @MEF_Forum.