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August 26, 2009

Sagem-Interstar's John Nikolopoulos to Present 'Tailoring Fax over IP Survivability' at ITEXPO West 2009

By Patrick Barnard, Group Managing Editor, TMCnet

Sagem-Interstar is a leader in “boardless” SIP-based IP fax systems. It offers email-based IP fax systems, desktop faxing solutions and fax outsourcing, catering to businesses and service providers of all sizes.

Sagem-Interstar’s (News - Alert) director, marketing and product management, John Nikolopoulos will be presenting a session entitled “Tailoring Fax over IP Survivability,” from 10:30 to 11:15 a.m., PT, Thursday, Sept. 3, during TMC’s (News - Alert) Internet Telephony Conference & Expo West 2009, Sept. 1-3, in Los Angeles.

To learn a little more about what Nikolopoulos will be discussing, as well as what’s new at the company, TMC CEO Rich Tehrani (News - Alert) recently did an interview with him. What follows are excerpts from the interview:

RT: What has the economic crisis taught you, and how has it changed your customers?

JN: The economic crisis has reinforced the need to not panic, stay highly focused on execution, and adequately prepare for the coming economic rebound. Our customers have changed on two specific fronts:
--Increasing focus on hard ROI, productivity gains, and overall solution value vs. specific product bells and whistles.
--Crisis has pushed customers to more closely monitor and address accelerating TDM to VoIP migration related business opportunities.
RT: How is this down economy affecting your decisions to reinvest in your company or market, if at all? Where will you invest?
JN: Sagem-Interstar continues to take advantage of its global leadership position within the very dynamic Fax over IP (FoIP) server market by continuing to gain market share and expand its customer base through different application optimized channels. The company continues to make important strategic investments in R&D to address, in a timely way, specific high potential growth opportunities associated with new channels and gaining market share at the expense of key competitors.
RT: What’s the strongest segment in the communications industry?
JN: Sagem-Interstar is focused on the Fax Over IP (FOIP) server space which addresses applications across the UC, ECM, and ERP ecosystems. Several billions of dollars are up for grabs in this space over the coming 3-5 years. The FOIP segment will experience a compelling CAGR > 42 percent  (according to Davidson Consulting), certainly one of the highest rates of any communications related industry segment!
RT: With the rise of smartphones and netbooks, many wireless technologies, such as WiFi (News - Alert), appear to be poised for rapid growth. For example, we’re seeing more and more airlines add in-flight WiFi. In general, how widespread should WiFi be, in your view?
JN: From a FOIP server perspective, it has become increasingly important to address the accelerating “mobility ubiquity” phenomenon. FOIP server applications like Sagem-Interstar’s flagship XMediusFAX platform support connectivity from anywhere, any device (e.g., mobile clients), and any time.
RT: Which nation or region of the world will present the largest opportunity for your company in 2009/10?
JN: We continue to see the NAFTA/EMEA zones as providing the greatest opportunity.  We have also made the strategic decision to increase our efforts in CALA as well as AsiaPac which offer some compelling opportunities in the next few years.
RT: In what ways is President Barack Obama helping or hindering the technology markets? What more can he do?
JN: I think that the President has reinforced the importance of technology as a key anchor in the country’s future prosperity. From an IT/telecom perspective, his focus on clean and green technologies play nicely into all software approaches (and related virtualization environment optimized platforms) to solve real world business challenges; course, Sagem-Interstar’s all software FOIP servers are excellent examples of these green and clean approaches.
RT: What device or devices do you use, and what do you wish you used?
JN: I am a current Blackberry user although I would certainly enjoy trying out the new iPhone3G!
RT: What has the iPhone 3G taught us? I know it’s very new, but what about the Palm Pre? What are we learning from the smartphones based on the open source Google Android (News - Alert) platform?
JN: It is certainly “entertaining” to watch how Google is going after many traditionally dominant players in different IT/telecom markets.
RT: I understand you are speaking during ITEXPO West, to be held Sept. 1 to 3 in Los Angeles. Describe your talk and tell us what companies or people should attend.
JN: The title of my talk is “Tailoring Fax over IP Survivability”.  Survivability is a critical yet often misunderstood topic of discussion involving business decision makers and IT administrators/architects alike, particular in the fax server space. Hence, a concerted effort has been made to introduce fundamentals, both at the technology and business level. Some advanced technology topics are also reviewed focusing on various networking tradeoffs. In essence, this talk is geared to both technical and business leaders who wish to gain a better appreciation of the emerging survivability solutions now available in the rapidly growing FOIP market.
RT: Why should customers choose your company’s solutions? How do they justify the expense to management?

JN: Sagem-Interstar has been the global leader and a key innovator in the FOIP server segment which it essentially created in 2002 with its bold launch of its game changing XMediusFAX FOIP server platform. Its XMediusFAX offering has the largest global FOIP footprint and represents the most mature offering on the marketing with many thousands of worldwide deployments. From an expense justification perspective, XMediusFAX offers a wide spectrum of compelling economic benefits. These include:
--Provides substantial ROI: Simple to use and administer, XMediusFAX SP yields considerable and rapid ROI (typically three to six months), since expensive fax boards and dedicated analog linesare not required.

--Increases staff productivity: XMediusFAX boosts productivity by typically 90 percent over traditional manual faxing, since users no longer need to make time-consuming trips to a fax machine.

--Reduces telecom costs: XMediusFAX can reduce telecom costs by 40 percent or more over traditional faxing. In multi-branch organizations, long-distance fax charges are drastically reduced through XMediusFAX’s built-in Least Cost Routing. XMediusFAX eliminates costly analog phone lines, hardware, maintenance and supplies. Organizations can save tens of thousands of dollars a year with XMediusFAX.

--Facilitates seamless interoperability and cost-optimized application integration: XMediusFAX drives business process costs down by seamlessly interoperating with VoIP gateways, IPBXs,voicemail systems, LDAP directories, ECM/ERP applications, and MFDs. Feature rich, open integration tools based on Java/CORBA, XML, web services, and Python scripting technologies enable cost-optimized and tailored application integration.
One final point that needs to be highlighted is Sagem-Interstar’s unique portfolio of tailored FoIP survivability solutions. Leveraging technologies including virtualization, SIP, FoIP transport, the Cisco (News - Alert) ISR/AXP branch solution, and XMediusFAX “auto healing” capabilities, incremental costs linked to the deployment of FoIP server related survivability can be significantly reduced. It is clear that these expenses must be weighed against the losses/costs incurred during an outage as faxing is increasingly associated with business critical processes. Many industry vertical segments fundamentally depend on fax as a means of doing business and any downtime is a direct hit to their productivity, revenue, customer service, compliance processes, and even corporate reputation.

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Patrick Barnard is a contributing writer for TMCnet. To read more of Patrick’s articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Patrick Barnard

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