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Ayava to bring Aura to the channel

Networking vendor expects an increase in its channel base because of the new products

With the release of Aura, Avaya is trying to offer investment protection during a poor economy along with new communication products.

The SIP-based Aura integrates communications devices across multi-vendor and multi-locations enabling customers to keep its current network in tack.

Amir Hameed, the leader for application and engineering sales for Avaya Canada, based in Markham, Ont., said Aura is a centrally-based SIP software that can control and help orchestrate a wide range of calls. Channel partners can offer customers a 12-month return on investment because Aura can quickly deploy applications across multiple locations no matter if those locations have a Cisco, Nortel or Avaya network in place.

“Channel partners can implement a centralize dial plan across the board with on-net calling. This offers a customer investment protection and they do not have to consider a rip and replace strategy. Aura is a traffic cop at the centre point and affords them benefits such as a single dial plan all on the same platform,” Hameed said.

He added that Aura may be a choice for customers who have gone through a merger or acquisition and still want to protect legacy systems.

The poor economy plays a significant part of Avaya business strategy behind the Aura launch.

Hameed said customers are looking for a 12-month ROI, while channel partners have to worker harder to transition customer into next generation systems. “You need a compelling reason to make this kind of move in tough times,” he said.

Also Avaya Canada wants to offer channel partners a choice beyond Cisco or Nortel Networks. Hameed believes that Aura because of its multi-vendor, multi-location play can become an alternative for channel partners. He told CDN that Avaya Canada has met with a few solution providers who do not support the company who are looking for a solution that can offer customers lease cost routing over multiple locations or who have offshore call centre.

Hameed did not offer any specific margin potential for Aura. He did say that Avaya channel structure allows for tier discounting. “The main thing to know is that Aura is software and the margins on software are typically higher. We have priced it competitively and at around $50,000 there is no sticker shock. Partners can put in a reasonable mark up,” he said.

Some of Avaya’s Aura trials in the channel have reported back to Hameed a 40 per cent savings in various customer sites.

Those channel partners who are interested in Aura will have to go through distribution as Avaya has changed its policy will no longer deal directly with the channel.

Aura is being targeted at mid-size to big national customers and the products can scale from 100 users to 250,000 users and 25,000 locations.

Also the 4,000 Avaya DEVConnect third party developers are building applications for Aura. The hottest applications currently are for unified communications, fix mobile convergence, green, and working from home, according to Hameed.