Press Kit


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Press Kit

  1. 1. Press Kit Contents Introduction 10 Key Facts about Aastra Aastra: a fast-growing company International presence External growth strategy A sound and profitable financial position Aastra's strategy and offering VoIP technology at the heart of Aastra Telecom's solutions A strategy based on open standards Applications which boost company efficiency Vertical markets Greater performance through partnerships Customers Senior biographies
  2. 2. 10 Key Facts about Aastra: • Headquartered in Concord, Ontario, Canada, Aastra has an international reach with 2,300 employees around the world, a direct presence in more than 30 countries as well as thousands of sales partners and resellers, including a strong presence among carriers • Aastra is a profitable and well managed company: Q3 2008 was Aastra’s 42nd consecutive positive quarter, revenues reached CAD$606 million by the end of FY 07 and the balance sheet is strong with a positive net cash balance • With more than 50 million lines installed globally, Aastra has one of the largest customer bases of any global telephony provider and the loyalty of our customers is a testimony to our product and service quality • Aastra has a long time track record of protecting customers’ investments • Aastra has a broad portfolio of enterprise communications solutions to satisfy its every customer’s requirements. Offerings range from feature-rich call managers for small and medium businesses to highly scalable ones for large enterprises, to integrated mobility solutions, unified communications applications, and call centre suites, complemented by a wide array of terminals. • Aastra is 100% dedicated to enterprise communications • Aastra is one of the fastest growing PBX manufacturers in Europe and is now one of the leading players in EMEA • Aastra embraces open standards to offer standalone network elements or complete system solutions to its customers. Aastra is the only company with a complete portfolio of architecture: IP-PBXs, software based call managers, open source platforms, hosted solutions and Microsoft based architecture (i.e. Response Point and OCS 2007) • Aastra continues to invest aggressively in R&D to be at the forefront of IP technology • Founded in 1983, Aastra has grown both organically and through M&A. With major acquisitions in Europe in recent years, Aastra has been at the forefront of consolidation in the enterprise communications sector (Ascom PBX Division - September, 2003; EADS Telecom Division – March, 2005, DeTeWe - August 2005 and in April 2008 Ericsson’s Enterprise Communications division)
  3. 3. Aastra: a fast-growing company Aastra develops and delivers innovative communications products and applications for businesses. Aastra’s operations are truly global with more than 50 million installed lines around the world with a presence in more than 100 countries. Aastra is entirely dedicated to enterprise communications and offers one of the most complete portfolios of unified communications solutions individually tailored to its customers’ requirements. These range from feature-rich call managers for small and medium businesses to highly scalable ones for large enterprises, to integrated mobility solutions, call centers suites, complemented by a wide array of terminals. With a strong focus on open standards, Aastra enables enterprises to communicate and collaborate more efficiently. Founded in 1983 and based in Ontario - Canada, Aastra Technologies began as an engineering company providing services to the aerospace and defence markets. In 1992, the company started to specialise in telecommunications to develop and market products and systems to access communication networks. A sound and profitable financial situation Aastra Technologies, which is quoted on the Toronto stock exchange (T: AAH), boasts a strong financial position. At the end of Q3 2008, Aastra announced its 42nd consecutive quarter of profitability. The company's revenue for the year ended 31st December 2007 amounts to CAD$606 million. International presence Aastra Technologies has more than 2,300 employees around the world. Aastra has a direct presence in more than 30 countries and has thousands of sales partners and resellers around the world, including a strong presence in local carriers, like Orange Business Services, Telefonica, Swisscom, Belgacom, Telecom Italia and Portugal Telecom. Aastra’s local presence and strong partnership network ensure that the company has a close relationship with its large customer base benefiting from a high degree of direct touch. Aastra also has several R&D centres of excellence in North America and Europe. External growth strategy From 1996 to 1999, Aastra experienced strong organic growth. In recent years, it has accelerated expansion through external growth by acquisitions. After acquiring several North American based businesses, including Nortel’s analogue division and MBS Centrex business (in 1999 and 2001, respectively), and Global ADSI solutions Inc in
  4. 4. 2000, Aastra has aggressively reinforced its presence in Europe through the following acquisitions: - In September 2003, Aastra acquired Ascom's PBX division - In March 2005, Aastra acquired EADS Telecom's Enterprise Telephony business (including the North American Intecom Division) - In August 2005, Aastra acquired DeTeWe's Telecommunication Systems - In April 2008, Aastra acquired Ericsson’s Enterprise Communications division. By basing its development strategy on external growth, Aastra has increased its presence aggressively in European markets by acquiring companies with complementary geographical footprints and channel partners. These acquisitions have also rapidly expanded Aastra’s product portfolio and development capability through new R&D centres in Europe: - the Ascom PBX acquisition complemented Aastra’s existing terminals offering and provided a strong presence in the SME enterprise telephony market - EADS enterprise telephony solutions increased Aastra’s portfolio to address the medium and large enterprise markets as well as IP telephony - DeTeWe was one of the founding partners of DECT technology and brought expertise in wireless products - Ericsson’s Enterprise Communication division has given Aastra a stronger footprint in EMEA and in the emerging markets, and has strengthened Aastra’s portfolio of communication solutions for medium to large enterprises as well as video conferencing and integrated mobility. As a well managed company, Aastra has demonstrated expertise in implementing good cost controls in its acquired businesses, and has executed several successful turn- around strategies by aligning and then developing its acquired operations. By combining complementary technological expertise, product portfolios, distribution networks and geographic presence, Aastra has managed to position itself as a major player and has moved to a leading position in EMEA only a few years later Investing in innovation With more than 500 R&D staff, Aastra invests significantly in innovation to keep its competitive edge. Aastra has R&D activities in North America and Europe with Centres of Excellence focusing on: – Hybrid, IP and SIP-based call managers – Terminals – Contact centres
  5. 5. – Hosted solutions – Platform independent applications – Mobility – Conferencing and collaboration solutions Industry recognitions Frost and Sullivan, Growth Strategy Leadership Award in the European Enterprise Communications Market (2006) Deloitte, Technology Fast 50 – Canada (2006) Frost and Sullivan, Growth Strategy Leadership Award in the European Enterprise Communications Market (2008)
  6. 6. Aastra’s strategy and offering Entirely dedicated to the enterprise communications market, Aastra offers solutions tailored to enterprises of all sizes – from very smallest business to large multinationals – as well as telecom operators, local authorities and government organisations. Aastra has a broad product portfolio covering key segments. Most notably, Aastra has: - well-recognised expertise in small and medium systems. As the leader in this market in EMEA1, and with a long-time solid track record Aastra is best placed to understand the needs of small and medium-sized businesses - a reputation for reliability and security for its VoIP technology - strong capability in the integration of large complex systems. Aastra’s high performance communications systems for large enterprise can scale up to 150,000 users and are based on platforms that deliver reliability, scalability, security, a wealth of features and a smooth migration path to IP and Unified Communications - a wide range of analogue, digital, IP and cordless handsets, softphones and CTI applications to suit individual requirements. Aastra’s popular range of SIP phones can be easily connected to a variety of platforms (open-source such as Asterisk as well as IP-centrex , such as Broadsoft). These phones offer superb audio quality and a flexible XML interface to adapt to and integrate with other applications - a range of mobility solutions from DECT and WiFi handsets, to Fixed Mobile Convergence, to advanced integrated mobility, like mobile extension and One Phone concepts - applications for unified communications - Aastra’s contact centre solutions can serve a wide range of applications, from enhancing a small helpdesk to connecting millions of customers to a dedicated multimedia contact centre using videoconferencing tools, collaboration and virtual presence Our systems enjoy extremely high reliability,up to 99.999%. In case of fault, the system’s reporting, remote diagnostics and system programming reduce costly engineer call outs and simplify system changes and system programming. Finally, our terminals and systems are compliant with the WEEE and RoHS directives. Industry recognitions - What to Buy for Business (UK), 2007 and 2008 Telephone Systems Awards for the Aastra Intelligate 150, 300, 2025 and 2065. 1 Canalys – line shipments Aastra and Ericsson sub 100 extensions, EMEA Unified Communications Call Control Market 2007
  7. 7. - Internet Telephony Magazine Product of the Year Award, Clearspan (2007) - Aastra's SIP DECT Solution received a "Best In Show" award at the 2008 Internet Telephony Show
  8. 8. IP telephony at the heart of Aastra's strategy By investing strategically in R&D, Aastra provides enterprises with leading-edge technological solutions to enable their business. Thanks to focused R&D centres skilled in specific technologies, Aastra can now offer highly competitive communications solutions. Aastra offers its large installed base dual options for adopting VoIP: - Progressive migration to IP. This approach enables customers to switch to IP progressively, retaining their existing capital investment, while at the same time taking advantage of the benefits of voice/data convergence (open and upgradeable architecture, development of unified applications, simplification of networking and network administration). - "Full IP" solutions which meet an immediate need for voice integration in the company's IT network (e.g.: business moving into new premises, remote workstations or agents, complete renovation, etc.) This approach ensures investment protection with a smooth evolution to VoIP and Unified Communications. A strategy based on open solutions Aastra has strategically developed solutions which do not restrict the customer to a closed architecture but which instead are based on open standards. Thus customers can more easily integrate best of breed modules to build a top flight communication solution or they are equally able to develop their own uniquely customised solution. For example: - Aastra was among first vendors to launch systems supporting the SIP protocol (Session Internet Protocol) which has become the de-facto standard for IP network access, converged multimedia applications and low-cost IP endpoint devices. Aastra offers a comprehensive suite of SIP terminals (including SIP DECT and WiFi handsets). Aastra’s hybrid PBX range is SIP compatible, which makes it possible to connect standard low-cost SIP phones or advanced SIP terminals from Aastra. Moreover, SIP connection to VoIP operators (SIP Trunking) gives companies the opportunity to reduce the cost of their external calls and offers flexibility unavailable on traditional networks. Finally, Aastra also has in its portfolio SIP-based multimedia contact centres and SIP-based video conferencing solutions, which can be connected to any SIP compliant telephony system from other vendors.
  9. 9. Solutions to boost company efficiency In response to the growth and complexity of data flows, to increasing employee mobility and the need for enhanced customer relations management, Aastra creates and offers innovative solutions for: - Unified Communications: provides within a single system – without any change to the company's existing architecture – all the functions of a traditional messaging system, along with multimedia communication tools. At any time, and from any tool (Web client, PDA, pocket PC, mobile phone etc.) users can consult and manage all of their voice messages, emails and faxes. This comprehensive and upgradeable application thus improves employee efficiency, particularly when they are mobile, and enhances business processes. - Integrated mobility with DECT, Fixed Mobile Convergence provides advanced mobility solutions to enable improved productivity and availability for employees on the move - Call centre solutions provide a powerful agent desktop, skills-based routing, integration with major CRM applications (SAP, Siebel etc), real time monitoring tools, management applications, and multimedia, multi-modal contact centre capability (handling voice, video, text, emails and faxes), all for small and large call centres processing a few dozen to millions of daily calls. - Multimedia conferencing provides network and process efficiencies using tools that can be scaled up to several hundred terminals with an innovative IP multicasting technique (thus eliminating the need of a multipoint control unit); and bandwidth consumption can be reduced by a factor of 2-3 compared to other video conferencing solutions on the market . Aastra’s colour touch-screen and intuitive user interface make video conferencing accessible for everyone. Vertical markets Aastra has a wealth of solutions for vertical market needs. Here are a few examples: Health care: Alarms broadcast systems for emergency calls, pre-paid accounts for patients, multiple patient association with a single telephone Higher Education: Emergency notification, student billing, distance learning applications Hospitality: Message waiting indicator for specific hotel-tailored sets, connectivity to hotel’s ERP, voicemail and announcement system coupled with the language of the guest Industry: DECT handsets with additional functions such as emergency call, acknowledgement to the exchange or the ability to locate employees
  10. 10. Local government: Multi-tenant structure to host association and clubs, outbound call servers to warn the population in case of flood, linking of the city’s web site to the most appropriate contact centre agent Retail: Network between branch office and headquarter, including high capacity wireless solutions and IP networking Finance: Call recording solutions for trading desks, encryption, multi-media contact centres Government forces: Ruggerdised platforms for on-site deployment, ciphering, pre-emption mechanisms. Aastra’s high quality videoconferencing solution makes it ideal for telejustice, telemedicine and remote learning scenarios Greater performance through partnerships Aastra has strategic relations with many important industry players, including Microsoft, IBM and HP. Recently Aastra launched its AastraLink RP based on Microsoft’s Response Point call manager solution for small and medium-sized businesses. Finally, Aastra also has a technology partnership program to offer advanced tools compatible with its platforms.
  11. 11. Aastra’s product, application and services portfolio » Enterprise Communication Solutions Analogue, digital and system telephones Enterprise IP telephones Wireless products – DECT, IP, DECT, WIFI PBX and IP-PBX systems Open standard Interface adapters and media gateway Communication network platforms and applications » Support Services Customer service, support and training Business consulting, network design and implementation Maintenance services » Applications Contact centre solutions and applications Unified messaging systems and advanced unified communications tools Integrated conferencing platforms Corporate networking solutions System administration tools Multimedia applications, including video conferencing Aastra’s key customers National Geographic West Berks NHS University of Central Lancs Transport for London
  12. 12. Senior biographies Francis Shen Chairman and co-CEO Francis Shen began Aastra in 1983 and initially the company was focused on R&D projects in the defence and aerospace industries. In the early 1990s Mr. Shen redirected Aastra to focus on developing products for the telecommunication market. By 1996, the company became a publicly traded company on a junior stock exchange. With substantial sales and profit growth, in 1999 the company moved onto the Toronto Stock Exchange. Between 2000 and 2002, Mr. Shen led the acquisition of 5 telecom business units from Nortel, Lucent and Ericsson. Francis Shen was named Ontario’s 2000 Entrepreneur Of The Year in the Technology & Communications category by Ernst & Young Canada. Francis Shen holds both a Bachelor and a Masters degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Toronto and, since 1983 has been certified as a Professional Engineer in the Province of Ontario. Tony Shen President and co-CEO Tony Shen is one of the founders of Aastra Technologies Limited and a member of the board of directors since the company's inception as a public company. Tony became the President in 1996 and co-CEO in 2004. As a member of the senior management team at Aastra, Tony was instrumental in growing the company organically in the early years, participating in all the acquisition activities, and more recently integrating these acquired businesses. Tony graduated from the University of Toronto's Engineering Science, Physics program in 1980. Hugh Scholaert Regional Group President Hugh Scholaert is one of the founders of Aastra Technologies, Inc. and a member of the board of directors since the company's inception in 1983. He serves on the boards of a number of Aastra subsidiaries worldwide, and is currently President of Aastra Intecom in Dallas, Texas, CEO of Aastra Schweiz in Solothurn, Switzerland and Senior Vice President of Aastra Technologies in Toronto. Hugh is based at Aastra’s Zurich office in Switzerland where he currently makes his home. Hugh graduated from the University of Toronto's Engineering Science program in 1981, and received a Masters degree from the University of Toronto's Institute for Aerospace Studies in 1983. As a member of the senior management team at Aastra, Hugh has helped transform the company into a major global provider of enterprise telecommunications products.
  13. 13. Contacts: Bev Martin Marketing Manager +44 (0)1252 532100 Email