Mitel To Bundle UC Suite With Vidyo's Videoconferencing Solution

Mitel, which announced the deal on Tuesday, said the Vidyo partnership will especially round out Mitel's cloud-based collaboration and voice solutions, or those that are part of its newly branded MiCloud as a Service offering.

In an interview with CRN, Alan Zurakowski, Mitel's director of business development and strategic alliances, said that Mitel pursued a partnership with Vidyo, instead of a rival videoconferencing vendor, because Vidyo's software-based approach meshed well with Mitel's own focus on delivering collaboration technologies through the cloud.

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"The market potential for us was that [Vidyo's] solution fits very well with ours in terms of it being a software-based solution that runs in a virtualized environment and addresses the bring-your-own-device market," Zurakowski said. "We think, frankly, from a partnership perspective, it's a match made in heaven."

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Vidyo's HD videoconferencing platform is unique in that it leverages Adaptive Video Layering (AVL) technology so users can tap into general data networks or the Internet for connectivity rather than a dedicated QoS network. Both investor and channel backing for Vidyo has increased over the past year, with the company today touting about 300 channel partners and having pulled in a total of $116 million in capital funding since its debut in 2005.

Mitel first teamed up with Vidyo, along with VMware, last year to make Mitel's virtualized Unified Communicator Advanced software and Vidyo's conferencing platform accessible through VMware View.

Now that Mitel is an official distributor of Vidyo's, Mitel plans to integrate Vidyo's platform across its entire line of UC and collaboration products.

"This is significant for Mitel on a number of fronts, the main one being that we did not have a full, end-to-end video solution, in terms of room systems and clients and bring-your-own-device and infrastructure," said Zurakowski.

Mitel channel partners will not need to be recertified to sell these newly integrated products, Zurakowski said. Brian Hawk, VP of Sales at Fulton Communications, a Norcross, Georgia-based solution provider, said Mitel's new partnership with Vidyo not only fills in a gap in Mitel's UC suite but also confirms Mitel's commitment to delivering collaboration technologies for virtualized or cloud-based environments.

"The whole market wants to get away from premise-based equipment, so to be able to bring our solution to the cloud and give our clients the robust capabilities they are looking for, and now adding video, makes this a really complete solution," Hawk said.

Marty Hollander, senior vice president, Market Development at Vidyo, said for Mitel partners looking to learn more about Vidyo solutions, Vidyo's own channel training materials will be available.

"Vidyo has developed these online courses -- we call them the 100, 200 and 300 series -- to train our own channel partners, and obviously those are available and perhaps will even be hosted on the Mitel side," Hollander said. "We are already prepared to help train people on understanding and how to sell the Vidyo product line."