8x8 to Acquire UK-based Voicenet

Osterman Research Report Examines Microsoft Office 365

In a move that will continue its international expansion, 8x8 has announced plans to acquire privately-held Voicenet Solutions, a UK-based cloud business telephony and communications service provider for $18.4 million in cash. The Voicenet news comes after 8x8 announced last month it had signed a deal with Interxion for interconnection services in London.  Voicenet Solutions provides a range of unified communications services supporting both SMB and mid-market businesses, including fixed mobile convergence applications.  The transaction, subject to customary closing condition, is expected to close before the end of the calendar year.

Vik Verma, Chief Executive Officer of 8x8 commented in a statement saying, "The acquisition of Voicenet clearly demonstrates the execution of our international expansion strategy as well as our move upmarket." He continued, "With its existing operational footprint, team of highly skilled and dedicated employees, solid mid-market and distributed enterprise customer base, and outstanding reputation in the UK, Voicenet provides 8x8 with an excellent opportunity to replicate in Europe the successful, profitable SaaS communications and collaboration business we've built in North America."

Kevin Scott-Cowell, CEO of Voicenet Solutions, added, "Voicenet has an established base of over 1,000 business customers and is well respected in the UK market.  8x8 has a suite of cloud communications and collaboration services which will strengthen and extend our existing portfolio of services among our growing base of UK and multinational customers."

In other news, a recent Osterman Research report analyzed the capabilities offered by Microsoft Office 365.  Microsoft Office 365 offers email, instant messaging, telephony, content management, desktop productivity, security, archiving and other capabilities delivered from Microsoft's worldwide network of cloud data centers. While Office 365 is, to some extent, marketed as something of a "one-stop-shop" for communication and collaboration needs, it is a generalist product by its very nature; consequently Office 365 cannot satisfy every requirement for every user at every organization.

The report suggests that Office 365 subscribers may need to use third party offerings to supplement the capabilities in Microsoft's offering.  The survey, conducted in early May 2013 with the Osterman Research survey panel, focused on capabilities, features and functions that organizations need for their communication and collaboration systems, and how well these might be satisfied by Office 365 and other solutions.  Access to the highlights and a link to the analysis can be found at http://webtorials.com/news/.

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