HONG KONG - September 20, 2005 - Cisco Systems® today announced that PMA Investment Advisors (PMA), one of the fastest expanding hedge fund advisory companies in Asia, has deployed Cisco Internet Protocol (IP) communications systems in its headquarters in Hong Kong. The new Cisco IP phone network not only enables PMA to reliably record voice-based financial transactions, but also delivers enhanced productivity.
Now PMA can integrate open-standard recording software with the Cisco phones to achieve proof of transaction for voice-based deals. Such proof of transaction is of paramount importance to all firms in the highly regulated financial sector. Alan Ng, Head of IT for PMA, said: "We no longer need to worry about managing proprietary hardware devices. The software solution is much easier to support.
"Apart from the need for an open-standard recording solution, our previous PBX system had reached its maximum capacity. It was time for us to make the move to a new, cost-efficient network that would offer the advanced features we wanted."
The solution comprises the Cisco color IP Phone 7970G, Cisco Unity Unified Messaging (UM) software, Cisco 2821 Integrated Services Router (ISR), Cisco Catalyst 3560 Series switch and Cisco Call Manager, a software-based call-processing component of the Cisco IP telephony solution.
PMA has linked Cisco IP phones with Microsoft Outlook to maximize productivity. As a result, employees can call anyone on their Microsoft Outlook contact lists with just one click. The easy-to-manage phone network and secure, feature-rich Cisco IP phones have found fans among satisfied PMA staff at all levels.
The Cisco IP Phone 7970G addresses the needs of executives and major decision makers, and at the same time brings network data and applications to users without PCs. This advanced, high-end IP phone includes a backlit, high-resolution color touch-screen display for easy access to up-to-date information, timesaving applications and advanced features. It also enables customers and developers to add more innovative and productivity-enhancing Extensible Markup Language (XML) applications to the display.
Cisco Unity UM software delivers e-mail, voice and fax messages to a single inbox to improve communications and boost productivity across an enterprise. Employees can listen to e-mails over the phone, check voice messages from the Internet and - when integrated with a supported third-party fax server - forward faxes to any location.
The Cisco 2821 ISR is part of the Cisco 2800 Series ISR. The integrated services routing architecture of the Cisco 2800 Series builds on the Cisco 2600 Series multi-service access routers and adds embedded security processing, significant performance and memory enhancements, and new high-density interfaces that deliver the performance, availability, and reliability required for scaling mission-critical business applications in the most demanding enterprise environments.
The Cisco Catalyst 3560 Series is a line of fixed-configuration, enterprise-class switch that provides network-based inline power, which eliminates the need to connect each IP phone to a wall outlet or power source.
PMA is also considering using the phone's touch screen to broadcast information to its staff. "We believe many more practical and useful functions can be created with the Cisco IP phone," said Mr. Ng. "The phone's flexibility is certainly a valuable benefit for network administrators and end users alike."
PMA has also planned to implement a similar IP network in its London office in the second half of 2005. This will not only extend the IP benefits to its overseas operations, but also drive down the IDD cost for communications between its Hong Kong and London arms.
"Cisco is pleased to work with a promising and fast-growing company like PMA to deploy our advanced, industry-leading IP communications solutions. IP communications is certainly a technology that a financial firm can take advantage of for business expansion," said Fredy Cheung, Managing Director, Cisco Systems (HK) Limited.