Two of telecommunications’ biggest names are on the verge of a colossal merger, according to the Wall Street Journal. Reports at the end of April suggest that Mitel are in talks with Avaya, offering between $2.2 to 2.4 billion for the rival company.
In doing so, they would bring together the resources, capabilities and global reach of two powerful brands. Most importantly, the merger has a range of potential benefits for both partners and customers.
While some will say that they offer very similar products, I believe that Mitel and Avaya products are complementary on many levels. Avaya is the world’s largest pure-play company for collaboration and contact centre solutions. They’re industry leaders, known for solid products in their two specialist areas.
On the flipside, Mitel has diversified its offering over the past few decades. Alongside platforms and applications for UC and CC, they have built up a strong portfolio in hosted solutions. Coming together, Avaya would benefit from Mitel’s success in cloud communications solutions/flexibility, while Mitel could take on-board industry-leading technology.
This complementary nature extends to their customer bases, with Avaya attracting enterprise-level customers while Mitel typically works with SMEs. That opens up some huge opportunities moving forward. I think Mitel’s success in cloud technology could prove very fruitful as part of a joint venture in the enterprise space, for instance.
Competing with the big boys
Of course, merging the two companies also means combining their installed bases. What were previously two competing vendors would become one combined super-power with a market-leading share in regions across the world. In doing so, Mitel-Avaya would create dangerous competition for the likes of Cisco and Microsoft.
By merging their amazing technology together, they can also create brilliant solutions for the future of communications. Based on their latest product releases, I believe that both vendors have what it takes to thrive in the digitalization of companies. But together they could develop faster, better solutions. This will definitely pose a challenge to Cisco and Microsoft. All this will translate into an even more dynamic and faster evolution of AI, big data, customer experience and collaboration.
Needless to say, this would be a big win for channel partners.
A more dynamic offering and better coverage in all regions will give Avaya and Mitel partners more appeal for new clients, versus the big-name competition. With Mitel being channel-centric, a merger might get the best of the two channel programs, empowering partners even more and creating more solid competition to other players.
Better results for customers
Most importantly, current Avaya and Mitel customers will benefit from more flexibility should a merger take place. Large enterprises can combine robust Avaya products with Mitel technology in-branch, while all customers will benefit from more versatile cloud offerings.
Already in 2019, we’ve seen Avaya shifting to focus on the next generation of contact centre technology. In April, Standard Chartered announced plans to replace 18 on-premises contact centres with four cloud-based centres using Avaya’s OneCloud private cloud. By coming together, Avaya and Mitel will be better equipped to take on more of these digital transformation projects.
Looking to the future
With partners adapting to offer both Mitel and Avaya, customers can get best-of-breed across the board. At Aura Alliance, we have numerous strategic partners that offer both Avaya and Mitel, assisting in seamless deployment and support for either technology – or both.
We have a great relationship with Mitel – and we look forward to the possibility of a joint collaboration in the future.
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