BT and Nortel join forces in SME strategy

8 May 2007

BT Ireland and Nortel today announced their new partnership to provide an IT communications package to small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through a voice over IP (VoIP) business telephony system.

Recent research carried out by Nortel claimed that SMEs typically pay almost three times more than they should in communications costs and that these businesses are now looking to technology like VoIP to gain competitive advantages and productivity increases that larger Irish businesses benefit from.

Derek Ashmore, country manager of Nortel Ireland, said: “The features included in BCM 50 (Nortel’s Business Communications Manager) provide SMEs with technology that enables them to compete on a level playing field and to respond to the needs of their customers, partners and employees with the same speed and efficiency as their larger counterparts.”

Nortel’s BCM offers small businesses a way to constantly field calls from customers through Auto-Attendant which answers, manages and routes calls 24 hours a day.

Using VoIP employees can have free inter-office calls and there is a unified messaging system that combines email, fax and voice so that they can be managed from one standard application like Microsoft Outlook.

BT Ireland’s decision to join forces with Nortel is, it said, part of its aim to become a leading provider of networked IT and converged IP services for the SME market in Ireland.

Anne O’Leary, managing director of BT Business, said: “Nortel’s BCM 50 gives organisations the ability to meet the communications requirements of all their audiences yet doesn’t require the capital investment of an enterprise-level telephony system.

“By partnering with Nortel, BT has added another fundamental element to our aggressive growth strategy to tackle inertia in the small business market by bringing them greater choice and competition.”

BT Ireland has 44 engineers and account managers on call, trained on the Nortel BCM 50 system, and plans to sell the service both through direct and indirect channels.

By Marie Boran

Pictured – Anne O’Leary, managing director, BT Business, with Derek Ashmore, country manager, Nortel Ireland