Nortel’s been talking up its unified communications partnership with Microsoft in recent months – part of CEO Mike Zafirovski’s strategic partnership plan. Avaya, however, claims it was Microsoft’s first choice but turned down the opportunity because it didn’t want to license its content control technology to Microsoft. “They came to us to offer that deal and we turned them down, and now they’re coming back to try again,” said Karyn Mashima, senior VP of strategy and technology, told Computer Business Review. That said, it sounds like there’s some sour grapes between Avaya and Microsoft as Mashima adds that Microsoft was asking to license Avaya’s “crown jewels”, and that Microsoft has realized its alliance with Nortel isn’t strong enough to take on Avaya or Cisco. “It’s fine for the Nortel installed base, but Microsoft is getting asked a lot by its customers about the relationship with us.”
Was Nortel Microsoft’s Second Choice?