Mitel Acquires Polycom – A warm\cold ripple across unified communications enthusiasts


As per Reuters report, Mitel is buying Polycom for about $ 1.96 billion in cash and stock. The news has sent a warm\cold ripple across unified communications enthusiasts.

With this merger, Mitel gains access to rich video and content solutions offered by Polycom, and Polycom gains access to telephony products and services offered by Mitel. Mitel & Polycom would gain each other’s customer base as well. Perhaps, the acquisition would work for each other. However, a third party must be watching this space closely. No prize for guessing!

Mitel & Microsoft

Mitel, like any other telephony companies (Cisco, Avaya etc.), competes with Skype For Business (SFB) in providing chat, audio and video conferencing, data conferencing, and softphone functions to users.

Polycom & Microsoft

On the other hand, Polycom is a natural partner of Microsoft to provide various communications modalities (primarily video and phone devices). Infact, Polycom is the only Microsoft UC partner that provides direct integration with more than 40 voice, video, and content solutions that integrate with Skype for Business / Microsoft Lync, SharePoint, Exchange and Office 365. Over the period of time, Polycom and Microsoft kept on expanding relationships in video collaborations space. What happens now?

Microsoft Angle

Microsoft & Polycom has been an ideal interop partner in many ways. Both of them have recommended each other with a certain motivation. It’ll be interesting to observe this space now. A product company, usually, is less interested in recommending products from a direct competitor. We are not out here to speculate something which doesn’t exist. However, we would be equally interested to understand future relationship dynamics between Microsoft & Polycom.

Partnership with Microsoft has helped Polycom generate lot of revenue. It would be interesting to see how the revenue flow is not hindered. Would it benefit the new acquisition (if hindered), remains to be seen?

Note: Audiocodes, HP, Yealink, Speactralink are the other partners’ in phones devices segment. Crestron, Pexip are the other partners in video interop\devices segment.

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