#MitelNext 2018

by Dave Michels

Here’s my post-event quick thoughts video on #MitelNext 2018.

Very interesting event. I think it’s the most committed and aligned messaging from Mitel leadership in some time. The event itself was a three-ring circus, but with each ring in a separate room. They had industry analysts and customers on one track – though still segmented. On a one-day delay they had industry consultants and channel partners on another track, in separate rooms they had meetings with their soon-to-be equity owners from Searchlight, and somewhere else there was a meeting important enough for CEO Rich McBee to leave and return mid-event. Must have been a Herculean logistics challenge. A major storm that flooded the Phoenix resort and a site-wide power outage likely didn’t help.

I had a little trouble finding an appropriate place to do my video. I started in the great hall (with the secret box behind me), but moved outside because tear-down services were a bit disruptive.

Mitel continues on its journey from a 45 year old premises-based PBX maker to its goal of dominating cloud communications. This transformation will accelerate in 2019 as a private company. Today, Mitel claims (citing Synergy) that it is #1 in private cloud, #1 in total cloud, and #2 in UCaaS — Mitel clearly believes it can be number one in UCaaS. To do so is going to require some changes, and that’s what Mitel Next 2018 was all about.

To become stronger in UCaaS, most of its priorities (that it shared) are internally focused: portfolio and GTM. The company is thinking big though, and cited components and ideas in presentations that (at least for now) have nothing to do with its portfolio (such as IoT).