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Rich Tehrani
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CRM

3CX

August 15, 2007

I recently had the opportunity to ask 3CX CEO Nick Galea about the evolution of the IP communicationsspace and the direction his company is taking.   3CX is well known for its SIP-based 3CX Phone System for Windows, a software-based IP PBX that replaces a traditional proprietary hardware PBX/PABX.   To learn more about the company, read this TMCnet article from earlier this year.   Please outline your new corporate initiatives.   We have launched version 3.1 of our phone system recently, which is a complete software based small business phone system running on Windows. Our main drive for Q4 of this year is the release of version 4, which will include a SIP VOIP client and have many innovations.   How is IP communications changing your company's strategy?   Our company is based on the future potential on IP Communications, so it’s pretty fundamental to our company strategy.   What pains does your company solve for customers?   The pain of the traditional proprietary phone system shackle. It is expensive, difficult to manage and entirely outdated. We remove that shackle-bind by liberating the PBX from the proprietary hardware.

Telecom Cost Management

August 15, 2007

One of the fastest areas of growth in communications – and there seem to be so many these days, is telecom cost management. In recognition of this fact, TMC has launched a Telecom Cost Management channel which is being sponsored by Optelcon.   Why is telecom cost management an important area? PSTN calls, VoIP calls, FMC, wireless calls, broadband communications, etc have made it challenging to understand phone bills, let alone manage the cost of them.   What sorts of articles might we see on this micro-community? Boy am I glad you asked.   Here is a list of some of the latest content on the site:  

Aperio CI Interview

August 15, 2007

I recently had the opportunity to speak with William Mich, chairman and chief executive officer of Aperio CI, and get his thoughts on where the market and his company is headed.   As you may recall, the company has a unique way of generating more revenue for service providers and moreover can reduce churn while increasing ARPU. To get some history on the company, be sure to read this article I wrote last year about how Aperio CI can help service providers generate more revenue.   ----   Please outline your new corporate initiatives.   Aperio CI is focusing on helping service providers better understand the propensities and behaviors of their customers, which ultimately will enable them to deliver more targeted and compelling offers that result in longer customer lifecycles, enhanced brand loyalty and greater profitability.   How is IP communications changing your company’s strategy?   IP communications gives providers many more options in terms of delivering value-added content. As a result, our company has become more refined in mapping customer attributes to help providers deliver the right offer to the right customer at the right time.   What is the biggest request coming from your customer base?   Finding solutions to reduce churn and build brand loyalty.   How are you answering their demands?   We have developed a comprehensive suite of technologies to help customers understand the attributes of both desirable and less than desirable customers, and customize offers that will motivate good customers to stay with the brand.   What do you think the future of the market is?   We are extremely optimistic that providers will pay equal -- if not more -- attention to retention. Savvy providers understand that keeping good customers is much more profitable and operationally sound than having to acquire a significant base each year.   How does the US growth rate in the U.S.

Smoothstone

August 15, 2007

I recently had the opportunity to ask Jeff Wellemeyer, chairman and CTO of Smoothstone, about the most recent call center solutions and the path Smoothstone is taking to create greater customer satisfaction.   Smoothstone is an IP communications provider that designs, integrates and services specifically tailored solutions including VoIP for medium-sized enterprises. The company’s IP communications platform provides next generation, centrally managed and enterprise strength solutions over a private nationwide network.   Please read more coverage of Smoothstone in TMCnet.   Please outline your new corporate initiatives.   Smoothstone continues to add new clients and to introduce new services. The most recent initiative is the introduction of our new Smoothstone Intelligent Call Control (ICC) platform.

TMCnet New Traffic Record

August 15, 2007

Thanks to all our readers and visitors who have allowed TMCnet to achieve a new traffic record in July 2007.   Here are the numbers:   Page Views 30,977,147 Average Visit Length 35:45 Unique Visitors 3,078,409   Page Views refers to actual pages viewed. So if you look at three articles a month on TMCnet you represent 3 page views. Our prior average was 20 million.   30,977,147 represents a 50+% increase over the prior record.   Average Visit Length represents how much time a person spends on the site   Unique Visitors represents how many unique viewers came to TMCnet in the entire month.   Thank you also to the TMC team for continuing to produce content our audience finds compelling.

IVR Technologies

August 11, 2007

I recently had the opportunity to ask IVR Technologies Vice President of Business Development Barry Sher about his business and the direction he is taking the company.   IVR Technologies is a software development company providing integrated application, media and billing server to next generation networks. The company is the first vendor to develop a commercially available SIP compliant IVR and billing server.   Please outline your new corporate initiatives.   IVR Technologies is focused on providing innovative enhanced services and real-time billing solutions to next generation service providers that serve to help build profit margin and revenue while attracting and retaining the subscriber base. Through innovation it is our primary goal to develop applications that greatly differentiate the new SIP-based communication networks from that of the legacy PSTN   How is IP communications changing your company's strategy?   With the overwhelming adoption rates of VoIP for both businesses and consumers our solution reaches closer to the consumer than ever before. 

AudioCodes Interview

August 10, 2007

Anyone in the IP communications business knows quite well that Alan Percy is one of the most well-connected and knowledgeable players in the space. Alan’s day job is Director of Business Development at AudioCodes and I swear his night and weekend job is to travel this great country of ours and the world at large and attend any and every communications event known.   There are few events I go to where Alan is not present. Even I envy his frequent flyer account.   Percy’s years in the business have given him deep relationships at companies making networking equipment, PBXs, ACDs, call center software, softswitches and just about anything and everything in communications.   AudioCodes is a provider of communications enabling equipment, gateways, SBCs and so much more. As the market evolves; I thought it made great sense to pick Alan’s brain about the future of communications.

Call Center/CRM Stories August 10, 2007

August 10, 2007

Big news this week in call centers and CRM as we find call center quality is improving. This is great news. There is more below so take a read if you want to learn about peace in the Middle East and other interesting areas relating to communications and technology.   Cincom on the Pursuit of the Perfect Customer Experience Research Shows Insurance Industry Lacking in Call Center Customer Satisfaction The Virtual Contact Center and the SMB Study Shows Perceived Customer Service Driving Market Share HD Videoconferencing Brings Peace to Youth in the Middle East Loquendo Debuts Kerem, New Male Turkish Voice Interior Concepts Launches Two Executive Wood Furniture Lines Call Centers Can Gain More Value from Call Recording Investment When Positioned Properly VendorGuru.com Helps Business Phone Systems Go Mobile

Office Communicator Voice Quality

August 10, 2007

AudioCodes Has Good Quarter

August 7, 2007

Cisco made a big splash with their earnings news today and subsequently it may be worth pointing out Audiocodes too released great numbers with growth on a year over year of 15.5%.   “AudioCodes’ second quarter financial results were highlighted by our return to sequential revenue growth coupled with continued strength in our networking business,” the company’s chairman, president and CEO, Shabtai Adlersberg, said in a statement to the press.   Adlersberg continued: “Underscoring our strong performance was our ability to generate $2.7 million of net cash from our operating activities. During the quarter we made solid progress towards increasing operating efficiencies and initiated a company wide cost reduction program aimed at improving bottom line performance during the second half of 2007 and beyond.”   Many of the AudioCodes partners I speak with are extremely happy with the partnerships they enjoy with the company. I have never heard a negative comment about AudioCodes and in this business this is unusual.   The one area the company has enormous potential to exploit is the tremendous arsenal of new technologies they have acquired from the likes of Netrake, CTI Squared and Nuera.   Purchasing so many companies in various telecom spaces so rapidly is certainly a big undertaking for any organization but over time if they can get each of these businesses to fire on all or even most cylinders, the company’s growth should be far greater than 15.5%.   This assumes the core network equipment and gateway markets continue to be solid. I have no reason to believe this won’t be the case and in addition AudioCodes is doing something very smart by diversifying into other areas.   Much of the company’s revenue was once dependant on communications equipment providers but now that Audiocodes is a more serious player in the service provider market, they are in a position to have a second revenue stream which should provide cushion if one of the markets was to soften for some reason.
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