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Telewest Triumph For Marconi

A prestigious contract to boost the efficiency and performance of the Telewest telecommunications network, while also creating new services for its customers, has been won by Coventry-based Marconi Communications against fierce international competition.

In a deal topping 5m, Marconi is to supply a range of equipment to enable Telewest to save costs, boost its international call handling and upgrade its network management, billing and call statistic capability.

"This contract was a hard-fought battle in which Marconi triumphed not only on price, but with the functionality of our products and our ability to deliver to extremely tight timescales," said Coventry-based managing director, sales, Rod Smith.

The contract sees Marconi supplying four System X digital telephone exchanges to provide Telewest with direct international gateways and also equipment for a range of customer applications and services. The exchanges will be located at Telewest's Glasgow, South London, Birmingham and Yorkshire franchises.

Howard Watson, managing director of Telewest's network services, said:

"The development of our Transit Network via the System X combined Transit and International Switches provides a level of flexibility that increases our operating efficiency and provides many new and enhanced services to customers."

The configuration of the System Xs will allow a range of services to be offered directly across the UK. In the Phase One launch these include:

  • Number Translation - freephone, split charge and premium rate numbers, as well as indirect access to the Telewest network.
  • Investigator - providing call traffic reports for freephone, split charge and premium rate numbers. The information available to business customers includes the number of calls receiving an engaged tone, or not answered.
  • Enhancer - allowing Telewest to manage and amend customer announcements on the network.
  • Service Management Platform (SMP) - integrating Telewest's billing, customer care systems, fault monitoring and databases with the features of the Intelligent Network.

Marconi Communications is a world leader in smart broadband transmission, access equipment and network integration. It has sales to more than 140 countries, a major presence in the United Kingdom, the USA, Italy and South Africa and is wholly owned by GEC, a global manufacturer of intelligent electronic systems.


Telewest Communications plc is Britain's largest broadband cable operator, currently delivering multi-channel television, telephone and Internet services to more than 1.4 million UK households; and voice and data telecommunications services to over 40,000 business customers. Over four million homes can now access Telewest's broadband services. At December 31, 1998, Telewest had an equity interest in 999,162 cable television subscribers, 1,260,922 residential telephone customers and 43,980 business customers. Over half of Telewest's 1.4 million residential customers subscribe to two or more of its services.

Marconi Communications Press Office   0115 906 4687


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