XConnects with $10 Million - Multilateral VoIP Peering Sprint-ing Ahead!

From their recent press release .." XConnect, a London-based provider of peering and ENUM registry services to the telecom industry, has raised $10 million in Series B funding. Crescent Point Group of Singapore was joined by return backers Accel Partners, Grazia Equity and Venrock. The company previously raised $12 million in 2007."

I just spoke with Eli Katz, XConnect CEO and founder about the news and a few other things related to the VoIP Peering business and as usual he is spot on. From the discussion we concluded that multilateral VoIP peering is the trend, focus and push from many second tier and a growing number of major providers around the world. More importantly multilateral VoIP peering has largely "happend" with the balance of the world now in need of "figuring it out". This is quite a change from years ago when we were first discussing the concept in VoIP peering conferences around the globe and being met with questions and disbelief.

To those non-believers I offer you this from Sprint

In their own words, "Only from Sprint, unlimited calls to and from any wireless phone on any network are now included in Sprint Everything Data plans at no additional charge".

That's 250 Million mobile phones in the US that are all now on-net to each other - in a consumer product. This is all driven by multi-lateral VoIP peering on the backend through the mobile carrier exchange. Sprint has multi-lateral peering established with the other mobile providers and now they have turned around and opened it up to the end users. I am sure that they will not be "the only" one for long. They have crossed a line in the sand and there is no going back.

This move makes a lot of sense from an operational cost/engineering perspective as it costs a lot less to provision and route calls to mobile end points as IP. Also, the overwhelming shift is to mobile and away from fixed-line, so this move accelerates that shift and the overall corporate savings/cost reduction. Good move Sprint!

The not so gorious reality though is that the glue that binds (what XConnect does) now goes largely unnoticed. What was once cutting edge and revolutionary is now "behind the scenes". What was just a few short years ago not believed to be possible by the masses just happend under the cover of broad daylight with major broadcast TV ads proclaiming this new "Everything" plan. Sadly no credit is given to multi-lateral VoIP peering, but it is in fact a significant portion of the "how it all happens".

Eli is content to grow his business and forge ahead in the quest to have all things VoIP operate seamlessly and at the highest rate of cost-effectiveness and he is not so concerned about the glory of it all. To that I say, Good on you! It may not be considered sexy by the mainstream media, but we know the truth!







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