Wrap-up of Connex18: Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise’s Annual Analyst Conference
Frenus, along with leading analyst houses participated in Connex18, Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise’s (ALE) annual analyst conference held in Riga from the 24th to 26th of January 2018. The company reported on the progress of its strategy to pursue a vertical-led, outcome-based delivery model to address digital transformation (conceived in 2016, more information here: Connex17).
In fiscal year 2016/17, ALE announced an overall revenue growth of 5%, with 15% growth in its chosen verticals. Additionally, more than 235,000 cloud seats were added in the last year. “Our growth is fueled by verticals, said Matthieu Destot, EVP Global Sales, and Marketing at ALE. The strongest performing vertical was Transportation with a three-digit growth. The vertical performed strongly in Europe North and North America (alone constituting 60% of sales) sales regions. Transportation was closely followed by Healthcare and Government with a two-digit growth rate.
Connex18 revealed deeper details about ALE’s strategy for Rainbow, a core element of the company’s unified communications strategy. As with the norm, Rainbow UCaaS does come with the usual IM, audio, and video conferencing capabilities. But the interesting part is Rainbow API Hub which helps the product to be delivered as a CPaaS, helping companies to integrate real-time communications with business applications. To further add cognitive abilities to the product, ALE has embarked on a partnership with IBM to leverage the IBM Cloud and integrate natural language processing and machine learning capabilities. During the conference, ALE also demonstrated several real-life use cases of the product in verticals such as education (intelligent chatbots for student communication).
Key highlights in the networking division include an extension of its OEM partnership with Aruba for another decade and around 40 partners for Network on Demand signed in 2017. The division’s ‘Management Services’ portfolio, which includes OmniVista Cirrus network management software, Network on Demand, and location-based services, provides significant added value for prospective customers. The company has also focused on making its Stellar AP WLAN portfolio to be easily deployed, managed, and scaled with value-for-money factored in as well.
A quick look at ALE’s 2017 results shows that the new strategy is starting to pay off, as evidenced by its healthy annual growth in the past year. In the communications division, the real differentiation factor appears to be the ease of use and implementation of its current products with customers’ existing systems as many of ALE’s peers are already on the cloud curve. On the networking side, the company is moving ahead with its vision of making networks smarter via software and cloud infusion, and IoT-compliant