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Top 7 Stories: New CenturyLink Solution, AT&T Layoffs, Charter-Windstream Conflict

Cloud 7

CenturyLink and Avaya made major cloud communications announcements this week.

The business technology world wasted no time plunging back into its routine after the holiday break. CenturyLink and Avaya hit the newswires with information about new products, while a large vendor brushed off a negative ruling from a bankruptcy judge. And our most-viewed story of the last five days featured a big telco contemplating layoffs.

We like to post a weekly review of our favorite articles every Friday. Scroll through the seven stories below to see the biggest updates in the world of channel. And check out the recap of holiday prediction pieces you may have missed.

7. 8×8, AWS, Vonage Fire Up Partner Program Expansions

Companies expanded their geographical footprints and widened their partner bases in December.

Those two key trends emerged in our monthly recap of new and changing channel programs. Vonage moved its channel into the U.K., and a Dutch vendor formalized U.S. partner operations. And for many companies, the change was opening up new support for resellers or other types of partners.

Check out the gallery I assembled.

6. 2019’s Top Digital Stories

Bankruptcy. Master agent M&A. Hybrid and multicloud.

Those were just a few of 2019’s big trends. The editorial staff at Channel Partners and Channel Futures compiled a list of stories that summarize the past year in our industry. The 11-page PDF is available to anyone with a Channel Partners website account.

View the digital issue.

5. Top Gun 51 Profile: CenturyLink’s Garrett Gee

Garrett Gee has led CenturyLink‘s channel program through a complex integration with Level 3 Communications.

We recognized Gee last year as a member of the Top Gun 51, an elite group of channel chiefs selected by a panel of analysts and master agents. Edward Gately caught up with Gee to ask him questions about CenturyLink, its channel and his career.

Take a look at the Q&A.

4. CenturyLink Targets SMBs with Cloud Communications Solution

CenturyLink had a two-fer this week.

The service provider launched CenturyLink Engage, which provides a softphone application and more than 80 features. Executives said the solution integrates the CenturyLink network with a cloud voice offering.

“Engage will offer partners the ability to quickly deploy new services backed by the network – limiting the need to design a service for each location and improved response if issues do occur,”  CenturyLink’s senior director of product management said.

Edward Gately has the scoop.

3. Charter Fights Ruling It Engaged in Windstream Customer Poaching

A New York Bankruptcy judge ruled that Charter Communications used false advertising to sway WIndstream customers.

If the allegations are true, Charter violated the Lanham Act by communicating that Windstream customers might lose their services as a result of Windstream going through chapter 11 bankruptcy. Chapter filed an appeal, arguing that Windstream hasn’t proven evidence of…

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