“ICT and Services Industry unite to help Europe on the global race for growth”

Brussels, 7 September 2005

Leading players from the software, telecommunication and services industry announced today that they have joined forces to launch the Networked European Software and Services Initiative (NESSI), a new European Technology Platform.

The aim of NESSI is to create one unified strategy to influence investment in European research to encourage the development of software and service-oriented architectures. Crucial elements of software infrastructure are missing today and their creation will facilitate the seamless and cost-effective development of services, enabling European companies to achieve flexible business models and compete in an increasingly aggressive global commercial environment. A software infrastructure built on NESSI principles will also benefit the citizen by widening the range of user-friendly services available, whilst guaranteeing privacy and safety.

The thirteen founding member companies include: Atos Origin, BT, Engineering, Hewlett Packard, IBM, Nokia, ObjectWeb, SAP, Siemens, Software AG, Telecom Italia, Telefonica, and Thales – a heavyweight group made up of almost one million employees and collectively generating €300 billion in annual revenues.

NESSI's launch comes at a time when globalisation is a reality, IT and communications are converging, the pace of adoption of new technologies is increasing constantly, open-source software is changing the overall economic balance, and IT itself is becoming both ubiquitous and invisible.

The software and services industry in Europe employs more than one million people and accounts for five to six per cent of European GDP. Over the last five years, 60 per cent of the jobs created in Europe were highly skilled and the increase of ‘high-knowledge' employment was three times faster than the average growth in more traditional sectors.

Viviane Reding, EU Commissioner for Information Society and Media, said: “I very much welcome this NESSI initiative, and the commitment shown by its partners to develop a common services platform. This has the potential to strengthen Europe's competitiveness in many economic sectors, and is another very practical step in implementing our i2010 policy for growth and jobs in Europe.”

NESSI's mission is to:

  • Provide European Industry and the Public Sector with efficient services and software infrastructures to improve flexibility, interoperability and quality;
  • Master complex software systems and their provision as service oriented utilities;
  • Establish the technological basis, the strategies and deployment policies to speed up the dynamics of the services eco-system;
  • Develop novel technologies, strategies and deployment policies that foster openness, through the increased adoption of open standards and open source software as well as the provision of open services;
  • Foster safety, security and the well-being of citizens by means of new applications, enhanced efficiency of industry and administrations, and competitive jobs.

NESSI is open to new members and will provide other companies with the opportunity to join at its first annual conference that shall take place in the fall of 2005.

For more information on NESSI's mission and objectives, please visit www.nessi-europe.com

PRESS CONTACTS:

Antonio Ferreiro
Spain PR Manager

Tel.: +34 91.214.8915
antonio.ferreiro@atosorigin.com

Anna Easton
Head of Media Relations

Tel: +44 (0)20 7356 5372
anna.easton@bt.com

Costanza Amodeo
Press Officer

Tel.: +39-06.49 201 320
Costanza.amodeo@eng.it

Philippe Borremans

philippe_borremans@be.ibm.com

Claudia Martens
Public Relations Manager, Public Affairs

Tel.: +43 3135 2000 2221
GSM: +43-664-8112-954
claudia.martens@hp.com

Riitta Mard
Communications Manager
Nokia Research Center

Tel. +358 7180 36117
Nokia Communications
Tel. : +358 7180 34900
press.office@nokia.com
www.nokia.com

François LETELLIER
INRIA Rhône-Alpes - ObjectWeb Consortium Executive Committee

GSM: +33 (0)6 84 64 00 24 -
francois.letellier@objectweb.org
Skype: francois.letellier
http://os3g.blogspot.com/
http://www.objectweb.org

Petra Hochstein
Director Business Development & Communication
SAP Research
SAP AG

Tel.: +49-6227-78-29-748
GSM: +49-171-56-71-711
C: +1-917-412-71.93 (only when in the US)
petra.hochstein@sap.com

Vera Janssens
Corporate and Marketing Director
0477/ 67 39 28
02/ 536 72 67\\
014/ 58 84 03
vera.janssens@siemens.com

Guido Weber
Corp Communications Munich
guido.weber@siemens.com
Tel.: +49 (89) 636-49030
Fax: +49 (89) 636-49220
GSM: +49 (175) 2086 494

Paul Hughes
Media Relations
Tel.: +49-6151-92-1787
Fax: +49-6151-92-1621
E-Mail: press@softwareag.com
Roberta Perfetti
Media Relations

Tel.: +390636882422- +390285956847
GSM: +393351312910
roberta.perfetti@telecomitalia.it

Mauricio Fernández
Communication Director

Tel: +34 91 584 09
prensa@telefonica.es

Elisabeth Valensi
Communications Director
Services Division

Tel. : +33 (0)1 57 77 83 83
GSM: +33(0)6 07 55 68 62
Fax: +33(0)1 57 77 83 53
elisabeth.valensi@thalesgroup.com