Unified comms player ShoreTel buys M5 Networks

6 Feb 2012

IP telephony player ShoreTel has acquired M5 Networks, a pioneer in hosted unified comms, in a cash and shares deal valued at US$146.3m.

Under the term of the deal M5 shareholders will receive US$84m in cash and 9.5m shares of ShoreTel stock.

A further US$13.7m in ‘contingent payments’ may be paid over the next two years if certain performance milestones are met.

“The acquisition of M5 positions ShoreTel as a leader in the fast-growing cloud UC market and delivers a suite of hosted telephony solutions that is unmatched in the marketplace,” said Peter Blackmore, CEO of ShoreTel.

M5 pioneered hosted UC in 2000 and today provides more than 2,000 companies with enterprise-grade communications on a subscription basis.

“This acquisition is a critical step in our evolution and enables the company to capitalise on trends in cloud computing and advance our enterprise communications strategy,” Blackmore added.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years