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Rich Tehrani
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MicroCorp Continues to Grow in SD-WAN, UC, Cloud and MPLS

October 26, 2018

As global enterprises are embracing SD-WAN and the move to the cloud, we decided to reach out for an exclusive interview with Trish Kapos – VP Marketing & Strategic Relationships at Microcorp.

This 32-year-old company is getting into large enterprise deals – the channel's largest SD-WAN deal as far as anyone knows, and even a  Fortune 5 account in their portfolio. The award-winning organization has over 80 providers, from AT&T to Zayo.

As a premier value-added distributor of telecom and cloud solutions, they have simplified the purchase and management of telecommunications services for business customers. Today, the MicroCorp People-Powered Network is a powerful combination of back-office systems, people and support offerings in the industry.

MicroCorp prides itself on being your whole back office or an extension of your current team, allowing customers to focus on growing their business profitably. In addition, their collaborative back office portal, Nautilus helps position them as a trusted, skilled partner for a national network of agents, MSPs and VARs.





Trish explained their growth areas are SD-WAN, UC, cloud and even MPLS is growing.

In terms of differentiation, the company prides itself on providing flawless commissions the first time to minimize or eliminate the need to recover them later.

Trish said, "MicroCorp is making huge investments in the area of automated tools as we continually see that self-service tools are what drive partner engagement."



She continued, "We are focused on the ecosystem and assist our partners in building a network of experts around them, along with programs that protect their customers and commissions as they open their customer doors to these experts."

Finally, MicroCorp’s Cloud Elements division is quickly filling the funnel with cloud opportunities.












Stack8: Achieving the Promise of UC and UCaaS

September 21, 2018



When it comes to UC, quite often, integrators leave when a system is technically up and running, not when it is optimally running. Stack8 was founded in 2010 to address this gap by bringing enterprise UC systems closer to what they could be doing from what they are doing.

The name Stack8 is interesting - it comes from the 7 layers OSI model starting at the bottom - the  physical layer carrying binary transmission all the way up to layer 7 or the application layer.

Stack8 refers to the human and business layer which runs on top.

CEO Steven Karachinsky explained in an exclusive interview, his company fights for customers to achieve the promise of UC and network - allowing users to communicate anywhere, anytime, on any device.
 

They work with companies using Cisco UC and fill in the gaps.

Sample customer list


For example - moves, adds and changes using a level 2 engineer is challenging as it's expensive, doesn't provide job satisfaction for the tech, zaps morale and is low priority, meaning a new employee could wait 48 hours for a new phone to be configured.

As a result, they built SMACS or the STACK8 Moves, Adds and Changes System so non-technical users can take over the task without errors. He explained ease-of-use is very important to them - there is no new terminology to learn, the logic is built-in and there are no templates needed like other solutions on the market.

"We try to make it as easy as smartphones," he exclaimed.

There is a Dial-Plan Manager which acts like an airplane seat selector, showing available numbers when you're assigning a new extension.



In addition, the IT administrator can:
  • Decide which fields or services should be shown to and hidden from the user.
  • Choose which fields are required.
  • Provide default values for any field.
  • Select and order the values of any drop down.
  • Customize text fields such as descriptions and labels to follow your company standards.
  • Set restrictions based on location (e.g. define a New York SMACS user and a Chicago user who can each do provisioning only for their office.)

Then you can authorize non-technical people in office administration, human resources or other departments to take over user provisioning.




























PGi Aims to Become Heart of Digital Transformation and UCaaS

September 19, 2018

60% of companies are behind on digital transformation (DX) and 34% of business owners say half their workers will be remote by 2020. Companies have to change and quickly to be able to keep up with a workforce which is increasingly working from remote locations.

Sure, (DX) is a term we use a great deal - perhaps even overuse but if the market considers itself behind and competition and a changing workforce require it, then perhaps it needs even more press coverage to ensure decision-makers are taking the competitive threat and opportunity to excel, seriously.

iPhone XS and XS Max Benchmarked: World's Fastest Phones (Again) https://t.co/2Knzy2iFrC pic.twitter.com/41ik34t4jQ

— Rich Tehrani (@rtehrani) September 18, 2018

We know not only is change happening more quickly but the pace of change is increasing as well. Apple's iPhone XS to be released tomorrow, is the fastest smartphone on the planet and increases the pressure on enterprise services to keep up with all the amazing things the latest generation of handheld devices can achieve.

A major thought leader in the DX space PGi CTO Patrick Harper recently wrote a compelling piece on a TMCnet sister-site detailing six considerations for enterprises adopting a UC&C strategy. In it, he had this to say:

Uptake of collaboration tools continues to grow as companies using this technology report higher productivity. Those with effective internal communications achieve 47% higher returns for shareholders, which makes effective communication and collaboration technology highly prized, while failure to promote effective communication and collaboration can be expensive - $37 billion is lost annually due to employee misunderstandings and poor communication. 








Nerdio ITaaS Helps Maximize MSP Profits

June 5, 2018

As customers continue to embrace cloud, MSPs and IT providers can look at the transition as an opportunity or a competitor.

One of the biggest challenges for MSPs is dealing with the increased cost of employees without being able to pass these costs on easily to customers. When benefits are factored in, increases can be 5-10+% each year.

One option is to hire less expensive workers but you get what you pay for many MSPs don't want the cheapest workers they can find servicing their customers.

Another way to handle the challenge is to automate but there is a limit to how much automation can be applied to installing servers and desktops.

This is where Nerdio comes in. They provide easy IT automation for managed service providers and their customers. Nerdio for Azure provides IT automation technology that delivers pricing, provisioning, management, and cost-optimization of hybrid and full IT environments on the Microsoft Cloud, allowing MSPs to build and rapidly grow their IT practices in Azure.

In a telephone interview, Nerdio CEO Vadim Vladimirskiy said, "Many MSPs are looking to add advanced cloud services to their offerings and find alternatives to continued investment in their own infrastructures.










Cloudstudio with Your UCaaS, Would You Like Fries With That?

May 21, 2018



McDonald's is famous for asking customers if they want fries with their order and as a result, over the years, they have generated millions of dollars of extra profit. We can all learn a little something from this worldwide purveyor of fast food.

Far less tasty but far more profitable could be the sale of on-hold, music and messages to your customers buying a PBX, UC or UCaaS. Whether you sell Mitel, Avaya, Cisco or just about all other phone solutions, you can also sell an on-hold solution.



Recently, we had an exclusive phone interview with Mick Sakakeeny, Division President, Cloud Services at Spectrio LLC. We met the company at the recent Ideacom event in Washington, DC where Your's Truly was a keynote speaker.



Spectrio product lines include Intellitouch, Cloudstream and Cloudstudio.











Martello Offers Unique SD-WAN Solutions

May 17, 2018

Martello Technologies has become one of the more interesting players in the SD-WAN space - by purchasing Elfiq - one of the first if not the first players in the space. From there, they combined SD-WAN with service assurance... From quality management to remediation.



According to Tracy King, Director of Marketing, "The layer 2 approach makes it easier to install." She continued, "You just drop in the box and it works."

She continued by explaining the company has subsecond failovers, hybrid WAN solutions, a UC site qualification tool and more. Customers can see in advance how many calls the network can concurrently support.

In addition, they offer a STREAM VPN engine which encrypts per flow and offers zero-touch provisioning.

The LBX700 Link Balancer provides throughput of 800 Mbps, 512 VPN tunnels and support for up to 14 ISPs

Tracy explained there is no limit to how many sites which can be meshed with their new ATLAS SDWAN solution.











vXchnge Data Centers differentiate with Channel Program, Uptime

May 14, 2018

As the value of cloud grows and companies realize they need greater cloud continuity, vXchnge is becoming a major player in providing cloud with greater uptime as well as flexible reseller solutions for the channel and others. In an exclusive interview with Ernest Sampera, CMO, he explained that four nines is 45 minutes a year which is too much downtime. This is why the leading carrier-neutral colocation services provider achieves greater than seven nines.



In 2017 the company secured $200 million to fuel its data center growth and now, the results of its investments have enabled the company to go to market with various solutions.

One is in\site, a business intelligence system that provides the company's customers detailed views, tools and interactions for managing their businesses and compute deployments within vXchnge data centers.



in\site provides vXchnge customers with a single-pane view, providing real-time information to support business planning and compliance governance. Key metrics for bandwidth utilization, peak power usage, power monitoring and asset tracking afford customers up-to-the-minute actionable alerting.









Jenne Becomes Leading UCaaS Value-Added Distributor

May 8, 2018

As resellers evolve from selling telecom hardware like PBXs to UCaaS, they often need help to figure out how to do it successfully. Beyond the financial challenges inherent in going from a CAPEX to a monthly recurring (MRR) model are the inherent difficulties in learning how to configure complete solutions which include the network and voice communications.

One company helping resellers and the channel making the switch is Jenne, Inc. They bill themselves as a truly value-added distributor according to Susan Elder, Senior Director of Marketing as she told us in an exclusive in-person interview.



In January of this year, TMCnet reported Jenne becoming a distributor of Zenitel Group. At the time, Patrick Howard, senior director of product management at Jenne said that Zenitel’s intelligent communication solutions for operational risk and resilience, as well as essential operational needs are critical to bridging the last mile in this market.

In February, we reported on a Jenne deal with Jive Communications. At the time, Patrick said, "Jenne’s high touch, fast response,’ model and UCaaS offerings will complement Jive’s scalable, flexible, and reliable cloud-based phone systems and unified communications services, and their stellar customer service." 

More recently, Jenne announced a new Cloud Master Agent Program for Avaya IP Office.









VirtualPBX Invented the UCaaS Space. This is What They're Doing Now.

April 24, 2018



In 1997, years before Skype, Vonage and before Cisco discovered VoIP, VirtualPBX was invented. To say the company was early is an understatement. Hundreds or thousands of communications companies didn't make it through the various bubble bursts between then and now.

Now though, the company is facing intense pressure from well-funded competitors coming at them from numerous directions. Here is how they are differentiating.



In an exclusive interview with CEO Paul Hammond, we discussed the company's latest platform, Dash - three years old and shiny new.







TetraVX Smooths UCaaS Complexity

April 7, 2018


In a recent in-person interview with Jimmy Carroll of TetraVX, he explained the company has an end-user centric approach to consulting with customers to provide superior UC solutions. TetraVX is a new brand of Netrix, LLC launched this past January.

They have an operating committee consisting of the following:

  • Samir Patel – Partner and Director of Unified Communications at Netrix, LLC for four years, Samir has over a decade of experience in the unified communications industry and will be leading delivery and development for TetraVX.
  • James Carroll – Partner and Director of Sales at Netrix, LLC for 11 years, James will be leading TetraVX’s sales and marketing.
  • Vytas Kasniunas – Partner and Director of Channel Relationships at Netrix, LLC for the last five years, Vytas has been with the organization for over 19 years in total and will be leading indirect channel sales and sales operations for TetraVX.


“With increased focus, investment and dedicated research and development, TetraVX will continue to build upon Netrix’s success and provide rapid innovation across the multiple integrated platforms. Supported by the broader Netrix family, TetraVX is poised well to capture the growing UCaaS market and be a leader in the market” said Rob Dang, Managing Director at Netrix, LLC.

In addition to developing its proprietary technology, TetraVX will retain its long-standing partnerships with Microsoft, Cisco, Five9, Nectar, and VOSS.

The company is a CLEC and works with eight tier-one carriers in the U.S.






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