I have to admit, the press release (see bottom of page) I received this morning from Packet8/8×8 may be among the most unique I have ever received as it details how Packet8 is the service provider of choice for a VoIP service provider who is closing its doors. The question is who is this provider who has 12,000 subscribers who is exiting the space?
This news is not surprising however to those of you who read Russell Shaw’s take on Packet8 based on the conversation he had with 8×8 CEO Bryan Martin at ITEXPO.
Here is a salient quote from this article:
SunRocket is not the only company having problems. We know of about three or four major players in the space that have significant customer bases, they’re both into both business and residential applications, and we’ve heard rumors that they’re interesting in exiting the market as VoIP service providers.
TMCnet’s Richard Zippy Grigonis also has some thoughts on the Bryan Martin keynote at the show. Here is a quote from this article:
“Differentiating services is key because it contradicts all of the metrics that Wall Street is complaining about right now about why VoIP is a four-letter word.”
By the way, Bryan said specifically if someone on Wall Street steps in something they look down and say “Oh VoIP!”
This of course is in response the Vonage and just how poorly this company’s stock has performed over the years. Just yesterday the stock dropped another 30% due to another patent infringement case. Furthermore, last night on CNBC’s Fast Money program the commentators said the only news Vonage makes these days is being down 30%.
Thankfully for the IP communications market there are very strong financial performers in the space like Cbeyond. 8×8 has been stable but since their outlook keeps getting better one has to imagine being in a similar space to Vonage is like swimming with a 20 pound weight around your waist. Astute investors will likely soon realize 8×8 is becoming a lot more like Cbeyond than Vonage.
Of course Vonage is the most visible company in the space and reminds me of the old adage, when you are first in the market you will have a lot of arrows in your back. How true.
Oh, and by the way… If you know the company closing its doors, please drop me a line.
News Release Issued: September 26, 2007 8:15 AM EDT
8×8 Signs Exclusive Agreement with VoIP Service
Provider Exiting Market to Migrate Subscribers
SANTA CLARA, Calif., Sept. 26 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — 8×8, Inc. (NASDAQ:
EGHT), provider of Packet8 (http://www.packet8.net/) residential, business and video Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone services, today announced it has signed an agreement with a service provider that will soon exit the VoIP market calling for the exclusive recommendation of Packet8 as the replacement VoIP service for its soon-to-be-orphaned subscribers.
According to the agreement, Packet8 will be the only brand presented and promoted to the roughly 12,000 subscribers who will be left without VoIP phone service after the company winds down its VoIP operations over the next three months. In return, 8×8 will offer these subscribers a specially-priced
Packet8 monthly service plan along with a free month of service, free activation, free shipping and a free Uniden 165P 5.8 GHz cordless phone to transition to its award-winning VoIP phone service.
"We look forward to welcoming these VoIP consumers to the Packet8 family of subscribers," said 8×8 Vice President of Sales & Marketing Huw Rees. "8×8 has been providing VoIP services since 2002 and, unlike many competitors, has established a strong business model providing subscribers with solid assurance that our service will be operational for the long term and that our reputation for quality and reliability will be maintained."
Just over two months ago, SunRocket, the second largest independent VoIP provider, announced it was shutting down its service and referring its more than 200,000 subscribers to Packet8. 8×8, now the #2 standalone voice and video service provider, was recently awarded its 69th U.S. patent for proprietary VoIP technology employed in the Packet8 service. In addition to residential service, 8×8 provides more than 8,000 U.S. based small businesses with the Packet8 Virtual Office hosted iPBX complete business phone solution.
About 8×8, Inc.
VoIP service provider 8×8, Inc. offers internet-based telephony solutions
(http://www.packet8.net/) for individual residential and business users as well as small to medium sized business organizations. In addition to regular
Packet8 VoIP service plans priced as low as $24.99 per month for unlimited anytime calling to the U.S., Canada and eight additional countries, 8×8 offers the Packet8 Tango Video Terminal Adapter and DV 326 VideoPhone along with accompanying monthly service plans also priced at $24.99 per month.
Packet8 Virtual Office, 8×8’s VoIP phone system for small to medium sized businesses, is a hosted PBX solution comprised of powerful business class features. Companies subscribing to Virtual Office pay just $49.99 per month per extension for enterprise class PBX functionality along with unlimited local and long distance calling in the U.S. and Canada. The Packet8 Complete Contact Center™ is a hosted multimedia call center distribution and management platform that works with any broadband Internet service and provides enterprise class contact center functionality combined with Virtual Office hosted iPBX calling features and business calling plans. Packet8 Softalk Office™, 8×8’s PC-based soft phone client, offers high quality voice and video in-network calling as well as outbound calling to the PSTN.
For additional company information, visit 8×8’s web site at http://www.packet8.net/.
NOTE: 8×8, the 8×8 logo, Packet8, the Packet8 logo, Packet8 Virtual Office,
Packet8 Softalk, Packet8 Tango and Packet8 Complete Contact Center are trademarks of 8×8, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
SOURCE: 8×8, Inc.
CONTACT: Joan Citelli, +1-408-687-4320, jcitelli@8×8.com
Web site: http://www.8×8.com/