2020 looks set to be another busy year for comms entrepreneurs and private equity investors keen to realise value from mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in our industry. According to Support to Win’s Managing Director, Tamsin Deutrom-Yue, market consolidation can only happen successfully when its investment case is technically achievable:
“There are undoubtedly big opportunities in bringing different customer bases together onto the same platform, or rationalising onto a new platform altogether. But the reality of making that happen can be very risky and time-consuming if you don’t manage it properly – threatening the whole business case.”
Support to Win’s specialist migration services have experienced a huge spike in demand since their launch last year, says Deutrom-Yue, with many of the enquiries received being attached to potential M&A deals.
“You’d think it would be smaller comms firms looking for extra skills and resources to plan and implement a migration. In fact most of our projects have been with larger service providers and resellers. For them, bringing in a specialist third party to lead a migration project makes a lot more sense than hiring or seconding an inhouse team for a set period.”
Aside from M&A, the other main catalyst for migrations is the evolution of platform strategy. Support to Win is seeing a renewed desire among operators and the channel community to anticipate potential issues by exercising more autonomy over how services are delivered, long term.
“A lot of people are looking closely at Cisco’s takeover of BroadSoft, for example, and what their options are to potentially switch to another platform. A couple of years ago, many might have thought that impossible because of the risk and complexity of migrating customers from one platform to another. Not any more,” added Deutrom-Yue.
“Migrations need specialist skills to manage both the technical and human factors of change alike. Because we sit across all vendor technologies, and draw on a strong people background through the parallel Train to Win business, we’re uniquely positioned to handle any migration project, be it from platform to platform, network to network, on-prem to hosted or TDM to IP.”
Wherever you look, it’s clear that the benefits of a successful customer migration can be transformative; minimising churn, boosting competitiveness, enhancing brand reputation and enabling upselling and cross-selling of premium features and services. And for business leaders, good migrations also convert into increased valuations and directly support M&A investment theses.
“We believe that the prospect of a large-scale customer migration shouldn’t have to hold you back. Our suite of migration services, backed by the 10-stage Support to Win migration methodology, prove you can ensure success to appropriate timescales and with minimal disruption.”