Avaya Introduces New Communication System That Delivers Big Business Capabilities To Small, Medium and Home Offices

New IP Office — Small Office Edition available from Avaya certified resellers

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. , US - Avaya Inc. (NYSE:AV), a leading global provider of communications networks and services for businesses, today announced the global availability of a new communication system that delivers big-business capabilities to small and home offices, and branch offices of industries such as retail, real estate, education, and government. The Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition is Avaya's latest offering in its award-winning IP Office family of communications hardware and software for small and medium-sized businesses.

This new solution, which is designed for up to 28 users, provides smaller firms with the types of business features — such as built-in firewall for network security, Internet access, wireless connectivity, advanced messaging capabilities, and three-way calling — that are usually available only with larger, more complex systems. All of these practical, converged voice and data business communications features are encompassed in one compact unit that enables businesses to manage their communications from a laptop or personal computer.

In conjunction with the launch of the IP Office — Small Office Edition, Avaya also announced that American Express Business Finance will provide business leasing solutions for Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition. In addition, special, 36-month 0% financing is being offered to qualifying business owners for equipment purchases of $2,000 or greater through March 15, 20041.

Big business features on a small business budget
The innovative product design of the Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition allows businesses to use the telephony, data networking or wireless capability to meet their current business needs in telephony, and add features as their needs evolve to include converged voice and data, and IP telephony.

With the new Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition:
• A small gift shop can serve its customers better by enabling its employees to forward calls to their mobile phones or home telephones, using the "call priority" and "call forwarding" features that can send specific incoming calls to a designated phone.
• An executive working from a home office can connect the Avaya system into a cable modem, get the same telephony and Internet access functions available at headquarters, and make sure that only business-related calls ring on the business line.
• Insurance agents working in the field can connect to their head office's communication network via public WiFi hot spots or wireless LAN networks installed in their branch offices to file up-to-the- minute reports;

The Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition brings Avaya's market-leading technologies for large, medium and small enterprise telephony2 to a broader range of companies. This space-saving solution can sit on or under a desktop, or on a shelf with space dimensions about the size of an 8ฝ X 11-inch ream of paper. Set-up is accomplished via intuitive management and installation wizard applications, which run on Microsoftฎ Windows. The solution can also be scaled and customized with traditional or advanced communications applications to meet the specific needs of individual businesses. As businesses expand and add employees and phones, they can connect the IP Office — Small Office Edition with one of the Avaya IP Office systems designed to accommodate up to 360 employees.

A firm can use its existing analog, digital, or wireless phones to connect the system by cable modem, digital subscriber line, wireless, or via the standard telephone network.

Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition has a list price starting at US$1,900. It runs on Avaya's new software release, IP Office 2.0, which is also being released today. The new software also brings new capabilities to the entire IP Office product family that include increased capacity to 360 users and wizard capability for faster and easier installation, adds, moves and changes.

"When it comes to communications, small and medium businesses are looking for technology solutions that not only come with a return on investment, but can enable their business to flourish," said Dave Johnson, group vice president for Avaya's small and medium business solutions group. "With the IP Office — Small Office Edition, Avaya is delivering the functions and features that can give home, small and branch offices a key to growth and profitability, at a price that's not out of their reach."

Small, medium businesses expected to continue technology investments to support their operations
Small and medium businesses are expected to continue investing in their operations, according to the OPEN Small Business Network 2003 Semi-Annual Monitor from American Express, a survey of small business owners and decision makers, who said they are optimistic about their business prospects and expect to increase their capital investments, with computers and peripherals at the top of the list.

According to AMI-Partners, which specializes in market intelligence and strategic consulting for the small and medium business enterprise market, small businesses worldwide are looking to enhance productivity and keep costs in check. "In the U.S. alone, more than one million commercially located small businesses are looking to deploy communication solutions that provide a mix of messaging, mobility and security capabilities over the next 12–18 months. The Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition solution is well targeted at these small business needs," said Deepinder Sahni, vice president, AMI-Partners, Inc.

Headsets.com using Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition to enhance customer service
The Avaya IP Office — Small Office Edition being used by Headsets.com Inc., which is a San Francisco Internet and catalog company named by The San Francisco Business Times as the third-fastest growing company in San Francisco. Avaya's IP Office 403 platform, which includes contact center applications, was installed at Headsets.com's downtown headquarters earlier this year. Now the company is also using the IP Office — Small Office edition at its headquarters and East Bay location, enabling the firm to use fewer telephone lines at its remote office, make internal calls to either location just by dialing the extension, and utilize the main system's voice mail facilities. This provides the East Bay location the same communication capabilities available at headquarters. The company is utilizing the IP Office — Small Office Edition's standard customer service applications, such as new reporting options that provide details on customer contact and service efficiency at both locations.

"For Headsets.com, customer service is not a function or department: it's an attitude," said Mike Faith, president and CEO, Headsets.com. "Our external focus is service: first, second and last. Our internal focus is business efficiency, so we chose the Avaya system because it meets Headsets.com's stringent demands. We also needed an IP system that maintains the flexibility we need to cope with our rapid rate of growth.

"More importantly than the hard benefits, is the feeling it creates that the remote office really is connected to the main office. That's invaluable."