Tapping Mid-Market Growth

Comms Business met up with Praful Shah, Chief Strategy Officer at RingCentral, to discuss the UCaaS market and how their product portfolio and go to market strategy has resulted in such a successful period of growth for the company.

For the third successive year Gartner has placed RingCentral in the Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) Worldwide which is pretty good for an organisation that only entered the market some ten years ago.

Praful Shah, Chief Strategy Officer at RingCentral, say the company is the fastest growing UCaaS form worldwide with a run rate of $600m and a year-on-year growth of 34%.

“Of this $200m is attributable to our mid-market and Enterprise sales which is growing at 77% year-on-year with Enterprise only sales at $100m growing at 100% year-on-year. This has lead our market capitalisation to reach $6bn. In turn we have made significant new hires to drive the company forward.”

Shah addresses the issue of RingCentral having both a direct sales force and an indirect channel head on.

“Clearly we are tapping in to the mid-market and Enterprise reseller base for our channel partners as well as having our own direct sales team. There is no issue or penalty here for either group as we make payments to our direct team whether the CP get the deal or they work with the CP to get the deal.”

What has RingCentral been so successful in the mid-market and Enterprise sectors?

Shah says that you have to look back to when the company first entered the market in 2007.

“It was the same year that Apple launched the iPhone and until that point there had been no meaningful innovation in Enterprise communications for 30 years. We bet of the prospect of there being a successful and fully scalable cloud based phone system that was capable, just like the iPhone, of doing so much more than just make phone calls.

And that is what we built – a ‘smart’ system that integrates and includes out of the box all the applications – messaging and video for example, that a modern workforce of the day needs and not just voice.

Until two years ago channels were still and just selling CPE solutions to mid-market and Enterprise users while the users were increasingly asking their suppliers for cloud based solutions. Some CPE have made a response to this demand but the majority are so far away from succeeding in the cloud.”

RingCentral makes a big play over the availability of its API and the fact that you have a global platform.

“Our API provides for a whole eco-system of solutions and creates an open platform for applications integration. At present, we list 140 out of the box ready to go third party application integrations including Salesforce, Microsoft, Oracle, Dropbox and Google.

Every user in every country needs a local access number, has to follow local rules, laws and regulations, provide EMS services and we are the only vendor that can manage all this centrally with instant activation.”

How significant was the launch last quarter of your Collaborative Contact Center solution?

“We’re pioneering a new approach to customer engagement and giving companies a better way to serve their customers that goes beyond the traditional contact centre. RingCentral is delivering on its Collaborative Communications vision, which puts collaboration at the centre of the customer experience, and extending it to the contact centre. Contact centre agents, teams, and experts throughout the organisation can collaborate in real time, enabling businesses to fulfil the promise of world-class customer engagement.

In traditional contact centres, the lack of communication and collaboration between agents and other departments across the organisation has historically resulted in siloed communications efforts, leading to slow response times and poor customer satisfaction.

We can provide expert access with RingCentral Glip and its team messaging capabilities. Agents and teams can bring in the necessary expertise, not only from within the contact centre, but also from the rest of the organization, to speed up response time, ultimately improving the customer experience.

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine