Comarch BSS Suite for cable TV operators

Client:
Multimedia Polska S.A.

Industry:
Telecommunications

Multimedia Polska S.A. is the third largest nationwide cable operator and provider of digital television, with video on demand, broadband and mobile data, and fixed-line and mobile voice (mobilFON). They were the first operator in the country to offer High Definition Television (HDTV) with numerous add-on modalities, such as video on demand (VoD) and personal video recorder (PVR) etc

The Company has been listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange since 2006.

The business need

 

Multimedia Polska S.A. (MMP) is a multi-service operator, established via the consolidation of several regional cable TV providers. Prior to the merger, each company concentrated on its own area of interest, (cable TV, telephony and broadband) acting independently and within its home region. As a result of these acquisitions, Multimedia Polska S.A. has transformed into a nationwide corporation, offering triple-play services throughout Poland.

Consolidation resulted in the requirement for a wave of data migration efforts from legacy Business Support Systems used by particular daughter-companies, to a single, central system capable of handling all regions and services under MMP’s jurisdiction. A flexible and complete billing solution was needed to perform the migration seamlessly, and the Comarch Billing System proved to be the ideal choice.

Multimedia Polska S.A. decided to perform the migration from the specific systems autonomously, in order to maintain control and confidentiality of the migrated data. Such an operation would have been unfeasible without the in-depth technical knowledge possessed by MMP’s IT personnel, and thus Comarch delivered this know-how through profound product training, delivered as part of its solution. This approach proved to be highly fruitful, and the customer’s IT department succeeded in migrating a group of regional operators into the new, centralized system. Tariff plan set-up and overall configuration were performed by MMP, leveraging for this purpose, a pre-defined API delivered by Comarch.

 

 

The approach

 

Multimedia Polska S.A. is a dynamic and highly flexible operator. Possessing the relevant technical background, MMP uses various technologies to offer its services: e.g. DSL, HFC, WiFi, etc. Most importantly, independently of the technologies in use, all services are now managed by one billing system. This helps to reduce costs and improve daily operations significantly.

Moreover, the nationwide scale of MMP’s business requires the operator to maintain adequate technical support resources (i.e. to perform on-site installation services). In this way, MMP employs the Comarch WorkFlow task management system, which is integrated with the billing platform, also automating the majority of task management efforts, improving daily performance even further.

The solution

 

Multi-service operators face rigorous competition, with diversified geographical intensity. For instance, in some major cities (or even, in particular streets) multiple operators are present, whilst at other locations, there are none at all. In order to compete effectively within these areas, operators aim to vary their pricing and adjust it to local market conditions.

Multimedia Polska S.A. was capable of pursuing such a demanding sales policy, thanks to the Comarch Billing System, which grants an operator the ability to define various “regions”, with independent pricing schemes offered to subscribers. Even the smallest of areas can receive its own tailor-made offer (e.g. a single street perimeter), in this way allowing an operator to fine-tune its pricing, and attain a competitive advantage over the competition.

This built-in mechanism enables MMP to effortlessly win regional price wars so typical of the multi-service industry: areas penetrated by intense competition can have a lower price-tag attached with numerous discounts, whereas higher margins can be enjoyed in “virgin” geographical regions.

Multimedia Polska S.A. offers triple-play services including:

  • Cable TV
  • Video On Demand
  • Broadband Access
  • Telephony

The results

Subscribers can select between single and multiple services from the portfolio. Since all services are managed by one central billing system, discount schemes attached to customer orders can be introduced by MMP. Such discounts would apply to either single services, or service bundles offered at more preferable prices in order to encourage subscribers to order more. Even complex formulas are possible, such as discount thresholds for one service dependant on the consumption level of another service (Cross Discount). Employing this method, the Comarch Billing System allows MMP to concentrate purely on the needs of its subscribers.

The Comarch Billing System, used by MMP as a replacement for the various legacy systems of its daughtercompanies, avoided additional business obstacles deriving from diversification of payment days for particular subscribers, which had been introduced by previous architecture. Some subscribers would pay in advance, while others had down-payment plans defined within previous systems. MMP needed to maintain this configuration within the new system, in light of the fact that attempting to unify payment schemes for all subscribers may have led to customer churn or cash-flow disadvantages for the operator. Comarch tackled this issue by featuring the individual configuration of payment plans – whereby the payment day can be customized for each subscriber, separately.

In this manner, data migration was performed transparently for the subscribers, and there was no requirement to force any changes to the contractual terms, allowing MMP to dodge potential problems related to financial liquidity or customer dissatisfaction.

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