Avaya IPO could be imminent

Avaya could file for an initial public offering of $1 billion, which could result in the company being valued at $5 billion, according to a published report.

The rumored IPO could be filed as early as this week, according to a report on The Wall Street Journal’s website, bringing the company public again for the first time since 2007. Avaya declined to comment on any sort of speculation.

In 2007, a combination of Silver Lake Partners and the Texas Pacific Group paid $8.2 billion for the company.

In the years since, Avaya has been promoting its unified communications software as compatible with other vendors’ gear and readily adaptable for customers who want to start with basic communications features but expand to incorporate conferencing and collaboration via voice, video, instant messaging and data.

The drumbeat from the company is that it wants to make UC ubiquitous and simple for end users.

Part of reaching that goal includes Avaya Flare, a software platform with a graphical user interface that simplifies collaboration and conferencing. Flare was introduced along with a tablet to support it, but it is designed with the intent to support any endpoint.

Avaya also bought the networking hardware division of Nortel in 2009, which brought it some new customers to whom it might sell its primary product line: unified communications software.

After the deal went through, Avaya CEO Kevin Kennedy said the biggest hurdle to that plan was overcoming Nortel customers’ fears that stemmed from a year of uncertainty they faced due to Nortel’s bankruptcy.

Recently, Avaya announced continuing integration of Nortel phone gear with Avaya voice and collaboration products.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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