Avaya CEO: Time For Innovation Is Now

During his keynote speech, Kennedy ran through rough times in global and domestic economies, highlighting that the current 17-month recession is one of the longest on record.

"It would be an understatement to say the world economy is in turmoil," he said.

But it wasn't all doom and gloom. Kennedy said tough economic times often spark innovation, and it is that innovation that flourishes and has a hand in pulling organizations out of the slump.

"The time for innovation is now," Kennedy commanded.

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For Avaya's part, Kennedy pointed to the recently released Avaya Aura, a SIP-based VoIP and unified communications platform that can tie together disparate systems to deliver a unified layer for application delivery.

The new Aura platform integrates across multivendor environments, multiple locations and several business modes to deliver voice, video, messaging, presence, Web applications and more. At the same time, the platform can reduce communications network complexity and infrastructure costs.

Kennedy called Aura a "central nervous system for realtime communications."

Kennedy said Aura comes as companies are looking to converged networks to cut costs and to a new communications model to facilitate interaction and collaboration between people, applications, networks and devices.

And while SIP has been available for 10 years, Kennedy said "SIP has come of age," as the industry evolves beyond circuits and packets to focus on sessions.

"SIP provides an opportunity to dramatically reduce complexity in the enterprise," he said.

In a time when applications define the relationship between users and networks, reducing that complexity is key. And as companies look to cut costs and complexity, it will usher in a new era of communications and ultimately a new era of economics, fueled by innovation. Kennedy challenged the crowd to look at better, more streamlined ways to communicate to usher themselves into the new era.

"New innovation will fuel renewal," Kennedy said, later asking the crowd, "How will you lead in this economic uncertainty?"