Cisco, Compaq, MS to Launch Euro ASP Center

Cisco Systems, Compaq Computer and Microsoft will together launch an ASP (Application Service Provider) Competence Center in France next month, the companies announced today.

The new facility will be available to independent software developers, ASPs and data centers for software migration, benchmarking and performance testing, the companies said in a statement. The ASP Competence Center will be located in Sophia Antipolis, France, where Compaq already has its European Technology Center, the companies said.

The center will be jointly funded by Microsoft, Compaq and Cisco, but officials declined to offer financial details about the terms of the agreement. "That is a figure we are not able to talk about at the moment. Though over the next week, Compaq will be announcing the various investments in the center," said Ronna Porter, a spokeswoman at Compaq.

The ASP Competence Center will focus on developing and testing data center technologies and services as well as development platforms and network infrastructure software for ASPs, the companies said.

Particular emphasis will be placed on using Compaq's products, technologies and services for data centers and Microsoft's Windows DNA 2000 platform, as well as Cisco's IOS architecture and services for hosted application software.

The opening of the ASP Competence Center will also serve as the official launch of the Powering ASP Roadshow that Microsoft, Compaq and Cisco will be taking through Europe, the Middle East and Africa from April to July of this year, the companies said.

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