UCaaS Update

I have been busy with a couple of new projects with Turnium and Peace Communications (plus the continuing work for NEC and Intermedia), so I haven’t been blogging.  But here are some updates.

RIFs in the space from RingCentral, Avaya twice and others.

Avaya has a new CEO and some financial troubles. In fact, RingCentral wrote off the money that Avaya owes them. RingCentral is being sold by Verizon, AT&T, Frontier and now Charter. Despite all those top ISPs on-board, growth has slowed.

Zoom launched a bunch of stuff, like email and calendar. They want to be the platform for SMB. They are certainly one of the most prolific feature produces – right up there with Cisco on Webex.

Everyone is trying to be the PLATFORM – doing everything for the business in one pane of glass. All hoping to be the one picked. Except businesses aren’t one size fits all; hence why companies use best of breed offerings and have 40+ apps! It has to be deployed well, trained on, intuitive with a great user design, easy to use. We can’t say that about most software, especially telecom software. Can’t find my camera or my microphone, the Outlook plugin doesn’t work, not logging calls — yeah, people in UCaaS think they are going to be the center of the business universe. Businesses will tell you that you are a utility. They have software to run their business – and THAT is the center of their universe.

Additionally, software like Salesforce, Zendesk, ServiceNow, Workday, Connectwise, Autotask and so many more are platforms with marketplaces that actually do help a business run – and are at the heart of that business.  Easier for SF or ServiceNow to add voice, video and messaging than for Zoom to add ticketing and CRM.

NEC is now paying all agent commissions upfront. Big move. Like JD Wentworth, partners get paid now!

RingCentral and 8×8 are making moves to be more profitable, according to their financial statements. They means layoffs, getting efficient, increasing gross margin by a point or two.

There is a rumor that some entity is trying to buy 8×8. We’ll see. Market cap is $500M and $447M in debt. An easy buy at $1.25B.  With RNG at $1.9B in debt, 8×8 is a deal.

SD-WAN and Cloud Communications are the first two steps for any business on the path to Digital Transformation.

That’s about it for now. I’d complain about the brokers and one PE backed one who is giving me fits and owes me commissions but I’ll rant on that later.


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