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IBM WebSphere Tapped for Cisco Application-Oriented Networking


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ARMONK, NY - 21 Jun 2005: IBM today announced that Cisco Systems, Inc. has selected IBM's WebSphere software as part of its new Application-Oriented Networking technology.

At its annual Networkers user group conference, Cisco outlined the latest stage of its Intelligent Information Network, the addition of application and messaging support for business applications. A key component of this phase, dubbed "Application-Oriented Networking" (AON) is Cisco's selection of the marketplace-leading messaging software, IBM WebSphere MQ. WebSphere MQ enables intelligent network-based data routing based on business rules.

Together, Cisco and IBM are collaborating to enable certain WebSphere middleware services to be enhanced by Cisco-powered network devices. The Cisco/IBM collaboration will enable strong integration between the middleware and network infrastructure layers. For customers, this will result in reduced complexity and total cost of ownership through further simplification of the IT infrastructure along with improved performance.

An IBM Business Partner, Cisco is a marketplace leader in network infrastructure and WebSphere is the marketplace leader in middleware infrastructure software. Today's announcement signifies an expansion of this long-standing relationship and represents the industry's first network-based messaging support for business applications.

The powerful combination of WebSphere MQ and Cisco for AON will benefit from IBM's industry-leading strength in helping customers use WebSphere software as the foundation of service-oriented architecture (SOA), a standards-based approach to transform to on demand businesses that integrate data across the enterprise, and externally with customers, partners and suppliers as well as link business and IT to drive down cost and create new opportunities for growth.

"Adding intelligent application message handling to the network enables applications and the network to work together as an integrated system," said Taf Anthias, vice president and general manager, Application-Oriented Networking Business Unit, Cisco. "It makes sense for us to collaborate on this initiative with IBM, the application integration middleware marketplace and SOA leader."

WebSphere MQ is a key product within IBM's application integration middleware portfolio. A recent report from IT analyst firm Gartner, Inc. positioned IBM as the number one application integration and middleware vendor based on license revenue in 2004. Gartner data showed IBM as the leading vendor across all key middleware areas including application servers, integration suites, portals and the composite application platform suite marketplace.

"Helping our customers extend their WebSphere-enabled applications, integration and business processes into the network is a logical evolution of our WebSphere strategy," said Robert LeBlanc, general manager, WebSphere, IBM Software Group. "Ensuring strong integration between IBM's WebSphere software and Cisco's AON infrastructure will enable both companies to serve its current and future customers better together than we can independently."

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