Alliance marks latest in growing lineup of partnerships for cloud communications provider
RingCentral continues to rack up partnerships as it expands the reach of its cloud-based communications solutions, with the latest alliance being Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise.
The Lowdown: The Belmont, California-based company is leveraging the partnerships, as well as internal innovation, to carve out a larger space in a crowded and competitive global cloud collaboration market that has only grown in importance since the onset of the global COVID-19 crisis.
The Details: RingCentral this week announced a strategic partnership with Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise – a cloud, communications, and networking vendor based in Paris – that includes creating a co-branded solution exclusive to Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise. The two companies also will jointly develop programs designed to expand their presence in the enterprise cloud communications services space.
The co-branded offering – Rainbow Office powered by RingCentral – will grow Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise’s portfolio of cloud offerings to include public Unified Communications-as-a-Service (UCaaS). It will be available in the first quarter of 2021.
Per the agreement, both companies will contribute resources for the development of the product and for sales and marketing efforts. In addition, RingCentral will pay Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise $100 million for exclusive access, a minimum seat commitment, and future commissions. The deal also will give RingCentral a stronger presence in the European market.
The Impact: The worldwide UCaaS market is expected to grow rapidly over the next few years, spurred in part by the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to large numbers of employees working from home to comply with government lockdown orders and slow the spread of COVID-19. However, cloud communications already was a growing space with the increasing mobility of the workforce, the proliferation of mobile devices, and the ongoing adoption by companies of bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies. Fortune Business Insights expects the UCaaS market to expand from $16.73 billion in 2018 to $36.45 billion by 2026 – an average of 10.5% a year.
Background: RingCentral sees partnerships as a path to faster growth in the cloud communications space. The company last fall signed an agreement with Avaya to create UCaaS solutions, including Avaya Cloud Office by RingCentral, which debuted earlier this year. In addition, it has partnered with Atos and Pax8 in recent months and earlier this month announced an alliance with Poly to develop and market a cloud collaboration offering called RingCentral Rooms for Poly.
RingCentral in April also announced its own videoconferencing service to compete with the likes of Cisco, Microsoft, and Zoom.
The Buzz: “We are excited to partner with Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise and to bring our industry-leading cloud communications solutions to their customers and partners,” said Vlad Shmunis, founder, chairman, and CEO of RingCentral. “Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise’s strong presence in Europe and beyond will enhance our ability to jointly enable customers and partners to accelerate their migration to cloud communication solutions in these markets.”
“Customers demand agile, robust, and secured cloud communication and collaboration solutions in today’s high-speed technology world,” Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise CEO Jack Chen said. “For our customers and partners, this strategic partnership enables us to offer them a wider choice of technology-leading cloud solutions to comprehensively cover their business needs. This partnership will also enable Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise to accelerate the development and transformation of our cloud business to become the No. 1 player in cloud solutions in Europe and beyond focusing on vertical solutions and services to make everything connect. It will bring significant opportunities for our well-established business partner ecosystem and strong values for our customers.”