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Windstream Bankruptcy: Partners React

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… the companies that acquire more debt as opposed to revenue,” he said. “As a reseller, you know you’re going to get stiffed on your commissions, so you’ve done all the work to be able to put the sale out there, and you’re not necessarily getting the revenue in on it. And then just a bigger, overall concern is you want to be able to put the best solutions to your customers and you want to be able to make sure the products you’re recommending are going to be stable, good and reliable. And if they’re not, if you’ve got to be concerned about the financial future of a vendor that you’re providing to a customer, that’s when it gets concerning.”

Chris Raponi, Powernet‘s senior director for channel sales, said the bankruptcies are not a concern for his company because it’s a VAR and a carrier, and it has its own network built and established. There’s uncertainty for those who don’t, and are either “white-labeling it or trying to build it themselves or outsource it,” he said.

Powernet's Chris Raponi

Powernet’s Chris Raponi

“The first thing that always gets hit when a company merges or gets acquired is the support,” he said. “We’ve seen that case with BroadSoft, Acme Packet-Oracle, Genband-Nextone. It’s history repeating itself. The most important thing today is for companies to have that SaaS type of service and to be able to support the heck out of it. If you can grow organically that way or use some of these customers, these kind of vendors in your network, just make sure you’ve got a very diverse network as backups because people are going to continue to merge and get acquired.”

Alex Fayn, S-Net Communications‘ CEO, said “gigantic” companies are going into bankruptcy so the smaller companies “like us can continue to provide phenomenal service because all they do is put pressure to the market to provide less expensive service, but the service itself suffers.”

“A smaller carrier like us provides better service and in the same market,” he said. “We would go in and take care of the customer, versus our competitors who think they can do it much cheaper, but really provide less service, and then the clients suffer. So it’s kind of good to see that some of them getting weeded out from the market and we can still do what we do best to service our clients.”

Bob Flinton, PCCW Global‘s director of North America channel marketing, said the bankruptcies do concern his company, but it’s not seeing or feeling the impact yet.

“The more you get diversified, mainly from a geographical perspective, and that’s why we’ve had the international growth, it helps insulate them from some of those areas that may be impacted,” he said. “From that perspective, the issues, the challenges aren’t impacting us the same way they would if it was strictly a regional play or a North American play only, or even a Western Hemisphere play. We’re looking at all the regions around the world. So if you diversify enough in those areas, you can insulate yourself from areas that get impacted.”

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