article

partner channel: Coming Together

Posted: 3/2004

Coming Together
Acceris Rolls Out New Structure,
Equity Program, Products and Patents
By Tara Seals


Acceris Communications Partners enters
2004 with a fresh look, including a new agent equity program offering stock
warrants.


Parent company Acceris Communications Inc. (formerly I-Link
Inc.) has finalized the acquisition and integration of what was WorldxChange
Communications, Transpoint Communications and RSL COM USA into one, newly
branded company. To kick things off, Acceris issued a 20 to 1 reverse stock
split, and renamed its stock from I-Link to Acceris, traded under the ACRS
symbol on the NASDAQ.


Now as we go forward we are in a growth mode in a couple of
major areas, says Ken Hilton, CEO at Acceris Communications
Partners.


One such area is Acceris Commercial Partner Program. Acceris
has reorganized its agent division under two regional vice presidents and is
looking to bolster sales through that avenue. Phillip Barton, regional vice
president of sales for the Acceris Commercial Products Division, oversees sales
operations and will help lead the channel management team in developing new
agent accounts in the Eastern region of the country. Jeff Leshin is Bartons
counterpart for the Western region.


Previous channel heads Denise Boerger, Ralph Metz (formerly at
Transpoint), David Schwartz (formerly at RSL) no longer are with the
company.


As of February, Acceris also launched a commercial agent stock
warrant program, lead by Hilton. It has allocated about 6 percent of the company
in the form of stock warrants, to be earned by growth of revenue that is
maintained for a two-year period. The program vests 50 percent after the first
year, and fully in the second. Around 50,000 shares are being made available,
only to selected agents. Agents need to apply for positions in the
program.


The integrated company was conceived to target niche markets
with a range of tailored product offerings, including local dial tone, domestic
and international long-distance voice services, and fully managed data and
enhanced services. To that end, Acceris has entered the local communications
market in Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and plans to
expand to Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina and
Tennessee in the second and third quarters and to California in the third
quarter. The bundled service for residential and business customers is
built on the UNE-P platform and combines unlimited local and long-distance
calling for one flat fee. The company also is offering special bundled minute
packages to specific international countries.


A second product, WorldWide Mobile, allows consumers to make
international calls from their existing mobile phone, receive the same
international rates as their bundled local plans.


Both services are available via agents.


Meanwhile, Acceris says it soon will package an IP solution for
the enterprise and applications markets. That launch will be fitting: Acceris
Communications Inc. has secured a patent for the Voice Internet Transmission
System. Filed in 1996, the patent reflects foundational thinking, application
and practice in what has grown to be the VoIP services market, a $3.5 billion
segment, says iLocus.


The VoIP patent, together with an Acceris patent and its related
international patent applications, form an international patent portfolio that
covers the basic process and technology that enables VoIP. Any service provider
using IP to carry voice traffic, with termination on the TDM network, is using
Acceris technology. In light of this, Acceris intends to aggressively pursue
recognition of its intellectual property, via a focused licensing
program.


In January we sent out the first wave of patent infringement
notifications to people in the industry that are doing voice over IP, telling
them they need to chat with us about licensing fees, says Hilton.

Links
Acceris Communications Inc. www.acceris.com
Acceris Communications Partners www.accerispartners.com


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