ADTRAN Joins Cbeyond PBX Partner Program - InformationWeek

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ADTRAN Joins Cbeyond PBX Partner Program

ADTRAN's NetVanta 7000 Series will now interoperate with Cbeyond's BeyondVoice services for SMBs.

As a provider of IT and communications solutions to almost 50,000 small businesses in the U.S., Cbeyond claims leadership in the SMB market. To further bolster that position, the company announces that networking and communications equipment provider ADTRAN has joined its PBX platform partner program. The partnership means that ADTRAN's NetVanta 7000 Series will integrate with Cbeyond's BeyondVoice with SIPconnect service and the companies will collaborate on marketing and sales efforts.

According to ADTRAN's director of channel marketing, Mike Johnston, the partnership meets an indentified need SMBs have for simple, inclusive solutions. He says, "Our customers tell us they like the NetVanta 7100, but they want a total solution. With Cbeyond, we've been able to pull together a product and a service that [for SMB customers] is simple and easy to use."

Late last year when ADTRAN launched its UC solution for SMBs (the NetVanta Unified Communications Solution Suite), ADTRAN's senior product manager, Jeff Wissing, focused on quantifying value in the cost structure. He said at the time, "With PBXs, you talk about TCO -- total cost of ownership."

Although he didn't specifically address TCO, Johnston did address how payment options can allow SMBs to stretch scarce dollars further. He says, "We, both ADTRAN and Cebyond, have offerings that are SMB-focused, that are designed for the SMB, and we have the support structure in place for the SMB. Particularly [appealing] in this economic climate, is that we've been able to take the ADTRAN products and Cbeyond services and put them together in a package with different leasing options that allows companies to spread their costs out on their initial hardware purchase over a period of time. They can take the savings they have from the Cebyond package and apply that to a lease price on a monthly basis and essentially upgrade their service and upgrade their hardware without any additional out-of-pocket expenses."

Cbeyond's product manager for SIPconnect, Jason Walker, also stressed the accessible costs and the appeal to resource-lean SMBs. He says, "The type of customer Cbeyond is typically addressing don't have a IT person on staff -- the VAR has to step in and be that IT solution. With the ADTRAN Cbeyond financing options, they can really see the value of the solution at an affordable monthly rate. They don't have the enterprise [IT] capabilities, but this puts quality services within reach."

Though both Walker and Johnston keyed on the affordability angle, Walker did indicate that Cbeyond is seeing some indications of increased spending. He says, "We continue to see steady growth with the SIP trunking product, which means they are either investing or have recently invested in IP PBX equipment. That trend shows us that while it's slow, it is continuing to grow."

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