MNF partners with BroadSoft on UCaaS

Following its BroadCloud deals with Telstra and Optus, BroadSoft has entered a UCaaS deal with MNF to provide collaboration and voice services to Symbio and MyNetFone government and enterprise customers.
Written by Corinne Reichert, Contributor

Australian retail and wholesale voice-over-IP (VoIP) provider MNF Group has announced a partnership with BroadSoft to deliver MyNetFone unified-communications-as-a-service (UCaaS) voice and collaboration services on BroadCloud to its subsidiary Symbio Networks.

The services suite will be based on the Business UC-One application, and will be offered to MNF's enterprise and government customers by the first quarter of 2018 across both Australia and New Zealand.

"As Australia's leading next-generation provider of hosted voice and data services, we look forward to working with BroadSoft to deploy MyNetFone services on BroadCloud. We believe that the trend towards cloud voice and collaboration services is inevitable as customers move away from legacy voice services," MNF CEO Rene Sugo said in a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).

"MyNetFone is already making strong inroads into the enterprise and government communications sector with our SIP trunking voice carriage service. With the BroadCloud integration, we will be able to further expand the service suit to also deliver end-to-end voice solutions."

BroadSoft MD for Asia Pacific and Emerging Markets Jonathan Reid said the deal would help the acceleration of uptake for cloud-based unified communications services throughout Australia and New Zealand.

Earlier this year, MNF had detailed growth plans for the upcoming financial year, saying it would expand its series of communications software services and products; continue pushing geographic expansion in the Asia-Pacific region through its Global Wholesale segment investing in further network assets; enhance its software capabilities; and drive customer acquisition through the purchase of more wholesale, enterprise, and government customers.

MNF's AU$17.5 million acquisition of CCI in early February signalled its move into collaboration and audio conferencing, while its purchase of New Zealand telco Spark's international voice business TNZI for NZ$22.4 million enables it to sell voice, data, mobile, and digital services throughout Europe, North America, Asia, and Oceania.

Symbio is also rolling out a nationwide voice network in New Zealand, which it wholesales to service operators and over-the-top providers.

The MNF UCaaS deal follows on the heels of similar agreements between BroadSoft -- which Cisco announced earlier this week it will acquire for $1.9 billion -- and Australia's two largest telecommunications providers.

Last month, Optus Wholesale announced a UCaaS solution for service providers in partnership with BroadSoft, with its Cloud-UCX solution enabling its wholesale customers to build and whitelabel UC products.

Optus Wholesale VP John Castro told ZDNet that the cloud-based solution makes use of BroadSoft Business' BroadCloud platform, and is hosted in geo-redundant Equinix datacentres.

The service currently includes instant messaging, presence, voice and video calling, conferencing, call recording, and file sharing. It also allows for whitelabelling portals and APIs; lower operational, maintenance, and setup costs; wider coverage, allowing wholesale customers to expand solutions by adding UC stations where required; flexible deployment across public and private connectivity using Optus' mobile and fixed-line networks; and autonomous quoting, ordering, provisioning, and branding.

Optus had in May announced its partnership with BroadSoft with the introduction of Optus Loop, a cloud-based telephony system run on BroadCloud for SMBs that provides hybrid mobile and fixed-line services for voice, instant messaging and presence, voice, file sharing, and video conferencing services, with a soft client for desktops and tablets.

Telstra entered a similar multi-year deal with BroadSoft in April to provide unified UCaaS, collaboration, and contact centre services to Australian enterprise customers.

Under the Telstra deal, the BroadSoft Business suite of cloud-based unified communications applications was deployed across Telstra's IP Telephony (TIPT), Digital Office Technology (DOT), and Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) Connect solutions.

BroadSoft at the time said the deal was made "in response to the growing popularity of a mobile workforce across Australian businesses", with Telstra's unified communications solutions experiencing strong growth over the last year.

MNF is also working with Telstra, in August announcing a sub-wholesale mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) deal between Symbio Networks and Telstra Wholesale.

Under the deal, Symbio's wholesale customers will be able to bill directly to their own customers and offer roaming options, as well as enabling more flexible contracting, higher pricing, and a faster on-boarding system.

MNF, which also provides telecommunications software, first announced moving into mobile with an MVNO deal with Telstra Wholesale almost a year ago. It allowed the telco enabler to move into 4G and 3G offerings after Telstra opened access to its 4G network to MVNOs in April last year.

The company's full-year financial results for FY17 saw net profit of AU$12.1 million, up 34 percent, and revenue of AU$191.8 million, up 19 percent. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) were AU$23.9 million, up 34 percent.

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