Friday, 12 July 2013


Headquarters at Basking Ridge, New Jersey

In July and August 2000 interviews reported that Avaya Communications would be created on October 1, 2000 as a spin off of the business telephone division of Lucent Technologies Inc.. Avaya took with it 34,000 employees and also received $400 million in capital from Warburg Pincus.

Henry Schacht became the board chairman and the first CEO was Don Peterson who was promoted from the CFO position of Lucent. Avaya had a stock symbol of "AV" and debuted at $20 a share.

Since 2001, the company has sold, and acquired several companies to support its current product set – Vista, VPNet, Quintus, Routescience, Nimcat Networks, Spectel, Ubiquity Software, and Traverse Networks. Avaya shifted from a direct sales focused to a channel focused organization and while originally 98% of sales came from direct sales, now 50% of sales are from alternate channels. In 2003 Avaya sold its Connectivity Solutions segment to CommScope for $263 million to focus on its phone gear and communications services businesses.

In 2004 Avaya expanded in Europe through a $370 million acquisition of Tenovis and in Asia through a majority interest in Tata Telecom (now Avaya Global Connect). In 2006 Louis D'Ambrosio took over as the CEO and president of Avaya. and on Jan 12, 2007 they announced the acquisition of Ubiquity Software Corporation for $144 million., Ubiquity develops SIP end-user applications.

Going private

October 26, 2007 Avaya was acquired by two private equity firms, TPG Capital and Silver Lake Partners, for $8.2 billion. As a result of this transaction Avaya became a privately held company, no longer traded on any stock market. On November 9, 2007, the firms completed their buy-out and Avaya shareholders received $17.50 per share of owned common stock. In 2008 it had approximately 17,500 employees, 40% of whom are located outside of the United States. Avaya's global headquarters are located in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, with Kevin J. Kennedy appointed as its Chief Executive Officer.

Purchase of Nortel's Enterprise Assets

Through Nortel's bankruptcy proceedings, certain assets related to their Enterprise Voice and Data business units were put up for auction. Avaya placed a 900M bid and was formally announced as the winner of these assets on September 14, 2009. On December 18, 2009, Avaya and Nortel officially closed the sale, to create Avaya with a total of about 21,400 employees. On March 8, 2010 Avaya renewed the LG-Nortel relationship to continue Avaya Data Solutions sales into Korea.

Western Electric roots

Since Avaya is a company spun off from Lucent Technologies, itself a spinoff of AT&T, Avaya continues to sell and support telephone models for businesses that were made popular in the heyday of the Bell System, including the 2554 wall phone, and the 2500 series desk phone, both popular Western Electric models. Avaya telephone production at the Shreveport Works, a former Western Electric pay phone plant, ceased in 2001. All of Avaya's telephones are made outside the U.S. by contract manufacturers such as Celestica. Much of Avaya's product and customer set today can be traced back to its AT&T legacy where it formed part of AT&T Network Systems.

2011 – present

At the start of 2011 Avaya acquired Konftel, a company founded in 1988 and headquartered in Sweden, to expand its audio capabilities with the OmniSound system. Then in June 2011, Avaya filed with the SEC to raise up to $1 billion in an initial public offering. On October 4, 2011, Avaya reported that it was acquiring Sipera Systems for its session border controller (SBC) functionality and UC security applications. On October 19, 2011 it was reported that Avaya is buying Aurix. On April 30, 2012 the shareholders approved the acquisition of Radvision by Avaya for about $230 million. The Radvision endpoints will be integrated with the Avaya Aura Unified Communication systems and interoperability has already been established. Avaya has been named the official telecommunication equipment supplier for the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

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