ShoreTel is looking to exploit Avaya's "death spiral" after it filed for bankruptcy protection last month, according to its CEO Don Joos.
Avaya filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the US last month, triggering concerns for the vendor's channel and customers.
Joos claimed to CRN that the uncertain financial situation at Avaya has opened up an opportunity for other comms players to steal market share.
"I absolutely am seeing more partners on the Avaya channel contact us," he said. "We've seen a significant uptake in the partners and we've actually signed some already and started selling - some decent-sized ones too. I want to continue to exploit that opportunity.
"I see it as a very good opportunity for us because if you think of where the growth of the hosted market is coming from, there aren't that many net new companies and so market share-wise Cisco and Avaya from a premise basis is 60 per cent of the market combined - that's where your growth is coming from.
"[If] you've got ones of those 60 per cent in Chapter 11 - they're the most explosive."
Joos was speaking as ShoreTel launched its unified comms cloud solution Connect CLOUD in the UK.
He explained that the vendor decided to move from an on-premises product-based model to a hosted as-a-service model a number of years ago, and accused other vendors in the space of lacking the conviction to make this switch effectively.
"We knew where the market was going to go and how to take the steps for it, and you can't look back," he said. "You can't have hesitation and I think that's what has happened to some people. They've hesitated because they weren't strong in their convictions."
Joos said that Avaya is paying the price for not being fully committed in switching to a cloud-based model, while ShoreTel is free to expand its hosted revenue having already made the transition.
"Growth is fun. Others are in cost cutting - that's not fun, that's a death spiral.
"We're focused on growth because we made these decisions a long time ago and we didn't take half steps," he added.
Mark Nelson, unified comms specialist at ShoreTel partner Cranberry, told CRN that Avaya's struggles, along with the launch of Connect CLOUD, gives ShoreTel the perfect opportunity to exploit its cloud position.
"I was quite surprised," he said. "We've had contact with existing Avaya customers who have been very concerned by [Avaya] going into Chapter 11 and that is going to open up a lot more opportunities.
"When you have one of the four largest players going into Chapter 11 it's great for the other three, so hopefully we will capitalise on that.
"I don't know a huge amount about Avaya but I'm not aware of their cloud offering being anything to write home about, so I think that's where ShoreTel should maximise opportunity with the Avaya thing going on."
An Avaya spokesperson was not available to comment when contacted by CRN.
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