3Com reinforces partner base with global players

The joint venture between Huawei Technologies and 3Com is moving full steam ahead to challenge Cisco for market dominance.

  • E-Mail
By  Anna Karhammar Published  January 8, 2004

|~|jigsaw.jpg|~||~|With the Chinese government giving its seal of approval to the joint venture (JV) between Huawei Technologies and 3Com, the two parties are now moving full steam ahead with their plans to challenge Cisco for market dominance in the networking space. “The approval [from the Chinese government] was more of a formality and the joint venture was actually operational the same day. We have been working on this for a year and a half so all the IT systems, production — everything was up and running already. Not that we neglected all the government procedures that had to take place, but we couldn’t wait [for the approvals], we had to gear up and plan ahead,” explains Pax Andersson, vice president international sales, 3Com. For 3Com, the completion of the legalities also represents the fulfilment of an action plan it mapped out over a year ago. The aims of which were to reassert itself in the enterprise marketplace, crack the growing Chinese market, add high end products to its portfolio and strengthen its voice offerings. “These were the missing pieces that we saw in terms of becoming a true tier one global network provider and we have now delivered on all four,” claims Andersson. “Through the JV we got back into the enterprise [space] and attained a high end product portfolio. We got a dominant position in the fastest growing network market — China — and through CommsWork we are getting our VCX Soft Switch, which has been a telco grade soft switch for carriers to run their traffic on. That is now being downscaled to be a CPE kit for corporate use,” he explains. To reinforce its extended product portfolio and enterprise play, 3Com is also strengthening its channel. While its existing reseller base has been crucial in sustaining its growth in the small-to-medium sized business (SMB) space and will continue to remain important, the vendor is also targeting large global players to partner with. Among the players that 3Com has been in talks with are Unisys and Lucent and the vendor hopes to have a deal signed off early this month. “Over the last few years we have been aiming more at the SMB area, so the partners we have are very strong in that area,” says Andersson. “[But] the idea with the Huawei JV is to now march into the large enterprise space. This means there will be some existing partners and some new partners that we will need to educate, or re-educate, and grow with to take on these bigger projects. But it is not a question of saying to old partners that they are not allowed to sell this kit. They will be trained and certified [in the new products] as well,” he continues. Additionally, 3Com has signed a deal with outsourcing player, EDS, which again signals its improved credentials as an enterprise networking player, and will ensure that it has another party championing its products and delivering services around its extended portfolio. The deal will cover switches, routers and voice over IP (VoIP) products. With the latter, according to Andersson, a space that EDS is keen to make a play for. “It [EDS] will use our existing product portfolio to enhance its margins in its existing outsourcing contacts and to go after new business, as EDS has decided that it should be the world’s biggest systems integrator in voice,” he says. Andersson believes the synergies between the two companies in terms of seeking market dominance, extending product and services offerings and attaining the competitive edge in the voice market will ensure a successful partnership. “They want to be the biggest guys in the world for VoIP implementations and we want to be the biggest player in the world for VoIP as well, so the marriage between us is great — they run the project and we run the product,” comments Andersson. Moving forward, 3Com is confident that it will take a larger slice of the networking pie and give Cisco a run for its money. The vendor says its strengthened channel and partnership base will reinforce the greater synergies between Huawei and itself. “We are positioning ourselves as a healthy company, with a growing high end product range from the JV and the right companies to be a tier one vendor and challenge Cisco,” says Andersson.||**||

Add a Comment

Your display name This field is mandatory

Your e-mail address This field is mandatory (Your e-mail address won't be published)

Security code