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January 25, 2010

Metaswitch Celebrates 500/250 Thresholds for 2009

By David Sims, TMCnet Contributing Editor

We don’t know how you celebrated the new year, we polished off a bottle of quite good champagne and resolved to keep all out resolutions.
Metaswitch Networks celebrated by hitting the 250-customer threshold for the Network Protocols Division, and the 500-customer tally for its Carrier Systems Division.

And just like you get free groceries for a year if you’re the one millionth customer down at the local Stik ‘n’ Pik, Metaswitch has identified their landmark “customer 500” is in the Philippines: Misamis Oriental Telephone System.
No word on Misamis’s prize.
The company got a boost recently, too, from the U.S. government’s distributing funds as part of the $7.2 billion Recovery Act broadband grant and loan programs: Among the early recipients is Slic Network Solutions (News - Alert), a subsidiary of Nicholville Telephone, which used part of its Broadband Stimulus grant to purchase Metaswitch equipment and bring VoIP phone service to consumers and business owners in northern New York state.

Also at the end of last year Metaswitch Networks decided to consolidate its MetaSwitch VoIP and the network protocol components it developed and sold under the Data Connection Limited (News - Alert) brand into a single identity, Metaswitch Networks, TMCnet’s Marisa Torrieri reported.

Metaswitch Networks CEO John Lazar told Torrieri that come 2010, “you’re going to see Metaswitch becoming known for much more than Class 4 and 5 switch replacement. Truth is, our customers have known this for some time.”

Metaswitch officials say they continue to “win business and expand” into the Asia Pacific region, while building its North American presence. “It’s been a truly defining decade for Metaswitch,” said Lazar.
It’s a presence they’ve done a, well, pretty good job building up so far: In the most recent Service Provider VoIP Equipment and Subscribers Q3 2009 report from Infonetics Research (News - Alert), cited by Metaswitch officials, the company “maintained the number one position in North America with a 59.9 percent market share in Class 5 softswitch licenses, while also holding a 24.4 percent share worldwide.”

Not that it was smooth sailing the whole way. Lazar told Torrieri that its fiscal year actually started in September ’08, “about two weeks before Lehman’s collapse,” which “scared us. Everybody else immediately seemed to be scaling back.” He said the company “took a look at our business and concluded that it was financially sound, scaled appropriately and that the value of our solutions didn’t change.”
That said, Lazar noted, “several industry analysts have noted that VoIP infrastructure spending was down about 30 percent in 2009, so clearly our customers cut back.”

Celtro became the 250th customer of the Network Protocols Division, selecting Metaswitch MPLS and IP Routing protocol suites to power their mobile backhaul switching.

David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Marisa Torrieri

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