Frost Radar in the North American Hosted IP Telephony and UCaaS Industry
The North American hosted Internet Protocol (IP) telephony and unified communications-as-a-service (UCaaS) market is experiencing steady growth as the small-business customer segment gradually matures and penetration in the mid-market and enterprise segments accelerates. Evolving technologies and business models, along with increasing customer awareness of cloud communications benefits, are driving adoption across different business sizes and industries and creating growth opportunities for service providers.
Businesses can choose from an expanding array of options as providers of various backgrounds and skill sets launch hosted IP telephony and UCaaS offerings to address growing customer demand. Providers differentiate based on brand; technology foundation; UCaaS feature set, price, and service performance; broader portfolio; network footprint; customer service and support; and other factors. However, UCaaS buyers are increasingly savvy and are applying greater scrutiny when selecting their providers.
The North America hosted IP telephony and UCaaS competitive landscape is highly fragmented with more than 120 brands vying for customer attention and investment. Service provider market shares fluctuate constantly due to the continued evolution of provider visions and strategies, execution, as well as ongoing M&A activity.
Due to the highly distributed competitor market power, Frost & Sullivan’s first North American hosted IP telephony and UCaaS Radar delivers analysis of 30 providers, a relatively large number of market participants. The analysis is based on a set of 10 criteria, as follows:
Growth index (GI) is a measure of a company’s growth performance and track record, along with its ability to develop and execute a fully aligned growth strategy and vision; a robust growth pipeline system; and effective market, competitor, and end-user-focused sales and marketing strategies.
• GI1: Market Share (previous 3 years): Market share relative to its competitors in a given market space for the previous three years.
• GI2: Revenue Growth (previous 3 years): Revenue growth rate for the previous three years in the market/ industry/category that forms context for the given Frost Radar.
• GI3: Growth Pipeline: This is an evaluation of the strength and leverage of the company’s growth pipeline system, to continuously capture, analyze and prioritize its universe of growth opportunities.
• GI4: Vision and Strategy: This is an assessment of how well a company’s growth strategy is aligned with its vision . Are the investments the company is making in new products and markets consistent with the stated vision?
• GI5: Sales and Marketing: This is a measure of effectiveness of a company’s sales and marketing efforts in helping the company drive demand and achieve its growth objectives.
Innovation index is a measure of a company’s ability to develop products/services/solutions that are developed with a clear understanding of disruptive Mega Trends, are globally applicable, are able to evolve and expand to serve multiple markets, and are aligned to customers’ changing needs. Key elements of this index include:
• II1: Innovation Scalability: This determines whether the organization’s innovations is/are globally scalable and applicable in both developing and mature markets, and also in adjacent and non-adjacent industry verticals.
• II2: Research and Development: This is a measure of the efficacy of a company’s R&D strategy, as determined by the size of its R&D investment and how it feeds the innovation pipeline.
• II3: Product Portfolio: This is a measure of the product portfolio of the company, focusing on the relative contribution of new products to its annual revenues.
• II4: Megatrends Leverage: This is an assessment of a company’s proactive leverage of evolving long-term opportunities and new business models, as the foundation of its innovation pipeline.
• II5: Customer Alignment: This evaluates the applicability of a company’s products/ services/solutions to current and potential customers (7-year horizon) as well as how its innovation strategy is influenced by evolving customer needs.
The Frost Radar reveals the market positioning of companies in an industry using their Growth and Innovation scores as highlighted in the Frost Radar methodology. The document presents competitive profiles on each of the companies in the Frost Radar based on their strengths, opportunities, and a small discussion on their positioning. Frost & Sullivan analyzes hundreds of companies in the industry and benchmarks them across 10 criteria on the Frost Radar, where the leading companies in the industry are then positioned. Industry leaders on both the Growth and Innovation indices are recognized as best practice recipients.
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