Nortel users need to keep tabs on Avaya integration plans

Avaya buyout of Nortel enterprise business raises overlap, consolidation and support issues, analysts say

The biggest issue facing Nortel enterprise customers on the heels of Avaya's $US900 million purchase of that business is product overlap, consolidation and subsequent support, analysts say.

Avaya emerged as the winning bidder for Nortel's enterprise business Monday, beating out Siemens Enterprise Communications.

Now comes the uneasy task of sifting through the product portfolio and eliminating redundancies -- an ordeal that could leave Nortel and even Avaya users with a shortened life span on their investments.

"There may be some surprises there," says Bob Hafner, an analyst with Gartner. "These are going to be two large companies coming together. It's not the easiest thing to do. These things never go without issues, problems or concerns."

Significant overlap is expected in the IP telephony/unified communications portfolios of both companies -- IP PBXs, handsets and call management software. Avaya is the leading revenue market share vendor in enterprise telephony, according to Dell'Oro Group, while Nortel is No. 4. (See our test of Avaya's unified communications platform.)

Less overlap will be found in routers, switches and other infrastructure products, where Nortel has a larger market share and installed base than Avaya.

"The biggest issue for users is, 'Show me the [product] road map,'" says Henry Dewing of Forrester Research. "They want to see hardcore product plans [and] how they are going to actually consolidate product lines."

Avaya has pledged near term support for the Nortel enterprise products, including those serviced by Verizon, a Nortel reseller. Verizon filed motions last week seeking assurances that Avaya would continue to support the Verizon accounts, which the carrier says include many federal law enforcement agencies.

"I'd be surprised if that issue doesn't work itself out," says IDC analyst Abner Germanow of the Verizon/Avaya impasse. "I'd have a hard time believing they'd leave the US government out to dry."

Nonetheless, Germanow is advising Nortel customers to accelerate any assessment or planning activities in light of the Avaya takeover.

"They should figure out where their own needs lie and how to most effectively migrate," he says. "They should hold companies to their multi-vendor visions -- that open means open."

Gartner's Hafner agrees.

"Customers need to pay attention to what's going on in the [merged] organization" to detect any potential distractions or turf battles that may adversely affect them, he says.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Avayanortel

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jim Duffy

Network World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?