This Week in Telecom: August 4th
This Week in Telecom is a weekly news round-up on VoipReview.org that aims to give our readers a fast and easy way to catch up on the latest news and top stories that are trending in the voice and telecommunications space. Check in each and every Friday to find out more about stories you may have missed in regards to new companies, mergers, trends, and other telecom advancements.
Let’s take a look at some biggest stories in telecom today:
Mitel Cements Foothold in UCaaS with its Acquisition of ShoreTel
Mitel (Nasdaq:MITL) (TSX:MNW) has given its California-based rival ShoreTel (Nasdaq:SHOR) a second try as it recently announced its acquisition of ShoreTel Inc. in an all-cash transaction worth approximately $430 million. Under the agreement, Mitel will acquire all of ShoreTel's outstanding shares at $7.50 per share, followed by the merger of the two companies.
The acquisition, which is expected to close by the end of September, will accelerate Mitel’s growth into the UCaaS (Unified Communications as a Service) market and create a combined annual sales of $1.3 billion. The combined company will have its headquarters in Ottawa, Canada, and will continue to operate as Mitel. Meanwhile, Rich McBee, Mitel's Chief Executive Officer, will continue to serve as CEO in the combined organization.
"This is a very natural combination that enables us to continue to consolidate the industry and take advantage of cost synergy opportunities while adding new technologies and significant cloud growth to our business," said Mitel CEO, Rich McBee. "Together, Mitel and ShoreTel will be able to take customers to the cloud faster with full-featured, cloud-based communications and applications."
For more information on the merger, please visit Mitel’s or ShoreTel’s website.
AVST and Collab9 Team Up to Deliver Secure, Hosted Unified Communications for Government Entities
Secure communications are vital not only to small businesses and large enterprises, but especially for government organizations. Access to newer but secure and compliant communications technologies is not always available, however, leaving government organizations to rely on legacy TDM, hybrid and VoIP telephony solutions. Applied Voice & Speech Technologies, Inc. (AVST) and collab9, a FedRAMP(SM) Authorized Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) provider recognize this challenge. That is why they have teamed up to create and deploy a joint cloud-based Unified Communications (UC) that addresses the needs and requirements of federal, state and local government entities.
Their latest partnership, announced early this week, will allow them to create a joint solution that leverages AVST's industry-leading UC platform, CX-E, and collab9's innovative, secure, hosted UC solutions, and help government entities make their transition to the cloud much faster. Steve Boberski, Vice President of Business Development for collab9, said in a release that the joint offering will be a critical component of the company's strategy to offer best-of-breed, cloud-based UC solutions to the public sector. “collab9's partnership with AVST enables us to offer an accelerated migration path through a secure integration to legacy TDM, hybrid and VoIP telephony solutions. By removing proprietary application instances from the cloud, we are introducing a new level of agility, flexibility and scalability that has, until now, been unavailable to the public sector."
Tom Minifie, AVST CTO, also expressed his excitement over their partnership, saying, "AVST is very excited to partner with collab9 to include CX-E as part of the collab9 secure UCaaS offering. Combining our expertise in UC interoperability with collab9's expertise in secure, hosted solutions, uniquely qualifies us to offer the ideal UCaaS solution for federal, state and local government organizations.”
Visit AVST or collab9 for more details.
Windstream Enhances SD-WAN Solution
Windstream (NASDAQ: WIN), a leading provider of enterprise-class data, voice, network and cloud solutions, has enhanced its SD-WAN solution to provide better customer experience and network connectivity options. Announced early this week, Windstream’s new SD-WAN service now offers additional broadband flexibility, improved self-service monitoring, and control options. The provider also introduced SD-WAN Concierge™, a managed service that helps optimize application performance, reduce costs, and simplify network management.
In a release, Joseph Harding, Executive Vice President and Enterprise Chief Marketing Officer at Windstream, said that the company’s new offering is designed to help customers get the most from their network. ““Following our merger with EarthLink, we are enhancing our SD-WAN solution as we work to integrate our offerings. The result is a powerful new solution that gives customers even greater network agility, scalability and performance, all while also reducing costs and virtually eliminating downtime,” said Harding.
Windstream’s enhanced SD-WAN solution is now available to organizations in Windstream’s nationwide service area. For more information, visit Windstream’s website.
CenturyLink Unveils VoIP Offering for Small Business Customers
CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL), a global communications and IT services company, has recently unveiled a new offering targeted towards small business: the CenturyLink Business VoIP.
CenturyLink Business VoIP is a pre-configured service that includes a premium set of phone features available at a flat monthly rate. It leverages a single cloud-based unified communications platform for business-class communications, which enhances flexibility, mobility, collaboration and customer engagement. Businesses can choose between two packages: Premium Seat Package (at $20 per user per month) and Premium Seat Package with Unified Communications ($25 per user per month). The service is ready to use and can be used with a customer’s existing analog or IP phone equipment with optional softphone. Nevertheless, customers can also choose to purchase new equipment.
Vernon Irvin, Senior Vice President of CenturyLink, said in a release that their latest offering is a testament to the company’s commitment to help small businesses grow by providing access to cost-effective communications technologies and services. "Our new robust communications platform gives these businesses access to enterprise-grade features without the need for on-site IT technical support to install and maintain services. Budget-conscious businesses can rely on CenturyLink to meet all of their technology needs, including high-speed internet plus a suite of offerings with Office 365 and other business applications,” said Irvin.
To learn more about CenturyLink’s small business VoIP solution, please visit CenturyLink’s website.