R.I.P. Innovative Communications Alliance (ICA)
Previously I mentioned that during the “integrated roadmap” announcement there was continued collaboration with Microsoft technologies, I had mistaken this to mean that the existing agreement (entered back in July 2006 and expected to terminate this July) would continue and possibly renew. However only 2 days since the AvayaN strategy was announced the ICA site (and my case study!) was taken down. This now re-directs to a Microsoft Gold Partner page within the existing Avaya site.
When I asked Avaya for more information on this, the following statement was released:
“The ICA relationship ceased with the Avaya acquisition of Nortel Enterprise Solutions. ICA was based on a four year contract between Nortel and Microsoft that was already scheduled to expire within the year. Avaya has and will continue to work closely with Microsoft to ensure tight integration between our solutions providing customers the greatest flexibility in deploying UC solutions. Current customers with Microsoft OCS integrations with Nortel solutions can continue to utilize their solution as they do today. Avaya is a Microsoft Gold development partner and has been integrating with Microsoft products across their portfolio for well over a decade – including Windows, Active Directory, Exchange, Outlook, Internet Explorer, Office, CRM, and, of course, OCS and Office Communicator. These integrations are important customer requirements that we are committed to continuing. We understand the somewhat more competitive situation that Microsoft has established, but Avaya has a lot of experience of working with competitors to ensure integration and interoperability to meet our customers’ business needs.
We believe that the combination of Avaya communications with Microsoft OCS and Office products is the most powerful end-to-end solution for Microsoft customers in the market, and are continuing to invest and enhance all our solutions in this area. ”
Shame…but not surprising, especially given the threat that OCS brings to the traditional PABX vendors. I’d imagine it would be unlikely for this agreement to be re-established.