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AP Engines Shifts Gears as CEO Departs

Reports that AP Engines Inc. has exited the cable provisioning business may be exaggerated, but things do appear to be changing at the Maynard, Mass. company.

Co-founder, president and CEO Jonathan Sieg has left to pursue other interests, according to fellow co-founder and chief technology officer Bill Willcox. Board member and telecom veteran Carl May was named CEO.

Willcox said the company is not leaving the cable business. Rather, it's shifting its focus to reach a wider market — businesses operating outside the telecom sector that need automated systems.

"I think we are focusing on the process automation, which is a big part of what we've been focusing on in cable," he said. "I don't think it is a radical shift, but it is a broadening of market focus to some degree, and a focus on the process automation part, which is really core to what we've been doing in cable. It still applies there, and we believe [it] also applies in other areas."

AP Engines's chief product is the AP InterLink integration platform, a suite of work-flow tools that can knit together multiple operating systems, automate service provisioning and activation and collect usage data. Though he noted that the company would focus on automation in the future, Willcox declined to say how exactly the product would change as the company refocuses.

"I think we will emphasize those products that we believe have the strongest appeal in the marketplace, but I can't comment right now on anything more specific than that," he said. "Everything we are doing is to make sure we are competitive in the marketplace in the long run. And so any decisions we make are toward that goal, to make us stable in the marketplace in the long run."

Time Warner Cable used the AP InterLink platform in its multiple-access trials in Columbus, Ohio. Though a full-service rollout offering EarthLink Inc. and America Online recently started in that system, Willcox said Time Warner is still evaluating how it will roll out the various provisioning technologies.