T3i Group Sees Third Quarter Drop in US Enterprise Telephony System Revenues despite Growth in IP Telephony and Unified Communications

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Although 3Q revenues grew 8% over 2Q, year-to-date 2008 US enterprise telephony system revenues were 10% below the first three quarters of 2007.

According to a new T3i Group research report, the US enterprise communications system market declined 7% in the third quarter to $1.01B compared with the same period a year ago. Although 3Q revenues grew 8% over 2Q, year-to-date 2008 US enterprise telephony system revenues were 10% below the first three quarters of 2007. Third quarter is normally strong, as leaders Cisco and Avaya finish their fiscal years in July and September, respectively.

The report, InfoTrack for Enterprise Communications, shows that US line shipments were flat quarter over quarter, and shrinking 11% year over year. Revenues trended better than line shipments due to the growth in IP telephony system average selling prices (ASPs) per line. ASPs rose due to the increased percentage of IP phones sold, and higher adoption of IPT in the small and medium business (SMB) market. While SMB prices are increasingly attractive, the price per line is higher as system costs are spread over fewer lines than for large enterprise systems.

Similar findings released by the InfoTrack for Unified Communications program confirmed the likelihood of a continued downward sales trend. T3i Group conducted a primary market research study gauging enterprise decision-makers' implementation plans for unified communications. Decision-makers were asked if the economy would cause them to delay their IP telephony or unified communications plans. A higher percentage of decision-makers indicated a major reduction in spending in the current survey than in the survey conducted in January of this year.    

For the sixth consecutive quarter, Cisco held its leadership position with revenue growth of 11% Q/Q and 13% Y/Y. Second-place Avaya also exhibited strong quarterly growth, at 10%. Nortel, third in revenues, edged Avaya out for the second spot in line shipments due to the success of their Meridian PBX upgrade programs. NEC took fourth place with 12% Q/Q and 9% Y/Y revenue growth resulting from their new portfolio of unified communications products.

IP phone shipments increased over 20% from one year ago, as the attach rate of IP phones (the percent of IP-capable lines equipped with an IP phone) has grown. Enterprise customers have historically limited deployment of IP phones to a specific portion of their workforce needing the capabilities. In fact, many traditional voice manufacturers continue to ship the majority of their new lines with lower-cost, higher-margin digital phones, particularly for SMBs. "Phone prices have come down, SIP standard phones are more widespread, and with the commoditization of IP telephony, system manufacturers are using phones as their sales differentiators," said Robert Olson, Voice Technologies Analyst at T3i Group. He continued, "This technology is mature, and not only are we seeing a gain in attach rates, but we are also seeing second generation IP phones replacing older models." As a result, the attach rate, which had been consistently below 50%, is now approaching 60% overall in the US.

About the InfoTrack for Enterprise Communications Program

InfoTrack for Enterprise Communications (IEC) is a continuous market intelligence program that tracks business communication systems revenues, shipments and market share globally. IEC databases and models are used to track, analyze and forecast line and system shipments, installed base, market share, revenues by size and technology, pricing and industry trends. For more information about the IEC program, please visit: http://www.t3igroup.com/marketresearch/enterprisecomm/IEC/ or contact Susan Hobart, shobart@t3igroup.com, 973/602-0127.

About T3i Group LLC

T3i Group LLC provides market research, data, analysis, and consulting and advisory services to the telecommunications industry. It has clients in 46 countries and conducts its business through four operating units: InfoTrack publishes reports that analyze shipment, revenue, market share and other pertinent data of importance to telecommunications equipment manufacturers; TelecomTactics maintains a database of the features and functionality of major telephony systems; Tarifica maintains a database of pricing-related information covering 400 telecommunications carriers operating in 130 countries; and TelecomWeb (http://www.t3igroup.com) is a content provider with an editorial staff that authors and posts telecommunications-industry news stories every business day. The site also serves as T3i Group's primary delivery mechanism for distributing its reports, analyses and data to subscribers.

T3i Group LLC is headquartered in Parsippany, NJ, with additional offices in New York City, London, England and Cherry Hill, NJ.

Press Contact: Debra Baker, 301/905-7703, dbaker@t3igroup.com


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