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Weekly Top 7: Stolen Windstream Copper, Cisco Contact Center Buy, AT&T’s IoT Ambition

Big News

Cisco is making a contact center-related acquisition, and Extreme Networks is building managed services opportunities.

The biggest names in telecom, cable and IT were on the move this week. Carriers are trying to track down copper thieves in the South, and Charter Communications choose to sell a large asset. In the meantime, Extreme Networks is making several changes to its channel program as it embraces Aerohive Networks partners.

We release a list of our top stories every Friday. You can check out last week’s news highlights, which included multiple M&A stories.

Scroll through the seven mini-stories below to see what you missed in the world of channel this week.

7. Extreme Networks Rolls Out Rebates, MSP Specialization as Aerohive Acquisition Wraps
Extreme Networks tweaked its channel program in several areas after completing its purchase of Aerohive Networks.

Select Extreme and Aerohive partners can now earn a 5% rebate for selling Aerohive’s unified wired and Wi-Fi cloud management platform. The rebate, along with a new MSP specialization, illustrates Extreme’s eagerness to reward partners for performing managed services.

The $272 million acquisition became final in early August.

Read what Extreme’s vice president of worldwide channels told us.

6. VMware, Dell EMC Launch Joint SD-WAN Solution
Dell and VMware combined the best of both worlds to launch a new software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) solution.

The new offering utilizes Dell EMC’s data center fabric orchestration and VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud. The partnership helps drive “public cloud simplicity and utility across the entire network,” according to VMware’s senior vice president and general manager of networking and security.

The companies announced Dell EMC SD-WAN at VMworld.

Get details on the solution.

5. Striking AT&T Union Workers ‘Would Not Back Down,’ Return to Work After ‘Handshake Deal

Striking Southeastern wireline employees returned to work at AT&T.

Employees affiliated with the Communications Workers of America (CWA) spent four days away from their jobs before the union struck up a “handshake deal” with AT&T. More than 20,000 employees were affected after their contract expired Aug. 3.

Edward Gately has the scoop.

4. Cisco Contact Center Portfolio to Get Boost Via CloudCherry Buy

Cisco bolstered its contact center portfolio by purchasing a customer experience management (CEM) software provider.

CloudCherry’s predictive analytics and customer journey mapping improve the customer experience and help agents make “real-time journey modifications.”

The financially undisclosed transaction will likely close this quarter.

Learn more about the acquisition.

3. Copper Theft Spike Plagues Windstream, Others

Windstream has offered a reward for information about its stolen copper wire.

Stolen copper has become something of an epidemic this summer, building on what already was a significant problem. Windstream has reported multiple thefts in Kentucky, while AT&T recently lost 50 wire in Arkansas. Criminals stand to gain a lucrative cut by selling copper to junkyards, while customers experience widespread call outages.

Read about the crimes.

2. Charter Communications Offloads Navisite to RDX

A database infrastructure provider named RDX is buying Navisite from Charter Communications.

A private equity firm will back RDX as it takes over Navisite resources, facilities, employees and customers. Navisite is a  managed cloud service provider.

A Charter executive said the divestiture will …

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