Cisco Purchase Extends Unified Communications Play

Cisco has signed definitive agreement to acquire the privately-held company, Orative Corp of San Jose, California. Orative provides an application which will allow Cisco to extend its Unified Communications portfolio to mobile devices such as cell phones and smartphones.

In March 2006, Cisco announced its Unified Communications system based on Cisco’s service-oriented network architecture (SONA), which enables businesses of all sizes to integrate their communications systems with their IT infrastructure, thereby creating a single communications platform. The Cisco Unified Communications system of voice, video and IP communications products and applications enables organisations to communicate more effectively by leveraging all services located in the network from anywhere, with any device, at anytime.

Orative develops mobile software solutions that extend the communications and collaboration capabilities of the Cisco Unified Communications system to business mobile phone users. With Orative Enterprise Software, mobile phone users can coordinate conversations, collaborate with colleagues, view information on Unity voicemail messages, screen unwanted telephone calls and interruptions, and securely access personal and corporate phone books.

Cisco and Orative say they will transform the mobile phone into a true business device, using Cisco Unified CallManager for call control, Cisco MeetingPlace for collaboration and Cisco Unity as the voicemail platform.

“Cisco’s Unified Communications system enables businesses to leverage their Cisco networks as a platform to provide the quadruple play — voice, video, data and mobility services — through a superior user experience,” said Don Proctor, senior vice president of Cisco’s Voice Technology Group. “The Orative acquisition will allow Cisco to further deliver on its promise of extending the Unified Communications experience from the network services to mobile devices.”

Under the terms of these agreements, Cisco will pay approximately $31 million in cash for Orative. The acquisition is subject to various standard closing conditions, including applicable regulatory approvals, and is expected to close in the second quarter of Cisco’s fiscal year 2007.

Orative was founded in 2002 and has 33 employees based in San Jose, California.
Upon close of the transaction the Orative team and product portfolio will be integrated into Cisco’s Voice Technology Group, led by Proctor.

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