The business VoIP segment has been quite an eventful place lately, at least relative to the years leading up to now. This morning we have another bit of consolidation, as 8x8 has announced a definitive agreement to buy the UK's Voicenet Solutions.
8x8 was one of the early consumer pure VoIP plays back when it was the hottest new thing, but within a year or two began to transition away from the consumer market and into the SMB space. There they have made a home, growing a niche into a profitable, $100+M-annual-revenue business in what we now seem to call cloud communications.
They will be spending $18.4M in cash to buy Voicenet. That will bring them 1000 business customers and the infrastructure and people to expand their model across the Atlantic.
This deal follows Vonage's move into the business VoIP space last month with the purchase of Vocalocity. The situations are quite different, but it's interesting that these deals have been VoIP players buying other VoIP players. It seems to me that the next step is consolidation with adjacent cloud-based technologies, although in what form I'm not sure.
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