Channel technologies, Sales and marketing, Networking, Channel technologies

ShoreTel Embraces ISVs, SaaS Partners for Unified Communications


ShoreTel unified communications (UC) has launched a partner program for independent software vendors (ISVs) and software-as-a-service (SaaS) providers.

The new partner program enables businesses and developers to build voice and SMS applications on the ShoreTel Summit communications-platform-as-a-service (CPaaS).

ShoreTel Summit Program Partners can access certification, development and co-marketing resources to help develop communications applications. In addition, the program enables partners to set up profiles in ShoreTel's online TechConnect Marketplace to drive demand for their solutions and services.

ShoreTel Partner Goals

Mark Roberts
Mark Roberts

"The goal of TechConnect is to make it easy for businesses to integrate their solutions with ShoreTel products, while giving customers the flexibility to address their unique use cases. Summit achieves and expands upon that objective," ShoreTel Chief Marketing Officer Mark Roberts said in a prepared statement. "The Summit Partner Program also allows ShoreTel to engage with new kinds of development partners and introduce our existing channel partner community to new revenue opportunities."

Three types of partners can use the program:

  • Solution: Can develop custom voice and SMS apps or integrate communication capabilities into customer environments.
  • Application: Include ISVs and SaaS providers that deliver market-ready apps built on Summit.
  • Module: Offer programming components and Lua libraries that other developers can use as building blocks to enhance Summit apps.

Summit Partner apps and services are available via the TechConnect Marketplace.

ShoreTel Integrates with G Suite, Google Chrome

ShoreTel is a California-based provider of business phone systems, UC and contact center solutions and continues to explore ways to extend its reach.

For example, ShoreTel last month launched the Connect for Chrome browser, an integrated solution designed to deliver a UC experience between the ShoreTel Connect IP telephony solution, G Suite and Google Chrome.

The integration allows users to search for contacts by merging ShoreTel contacts with G Suite contacts into a single list, ShoreTel said in a company statement. It also enables users to dial and control calls from the Chrome browser extension and create and join events in ShoreTel from Google Calendar.

ShoreTel: Up for Sale?

The ShoreTel partner moves arrive as the company considers a range of potential strategic alternatives -- which may even include a potential company sale.

ShoreTel began the strategic review process in August 2016, At the time, the company said it couldn't guarantee a company sale or another type of transaction would happen. More recently, CEO Don Joos in January 2017 said the strategic alternative review process was ongoing, though he didn't say much beyond that.

ChannelE2E has identified these companies as potential ShoreTel buyers, though we don't have any direct knowledge about potential discussions involving any of those firms.

Additional insights from Joe Panettieri.

Dan Kobialka

Dan Kobialka is senior contributing editor, MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E. He covers IT security, IT service provider business strategies and partner programs. Dan holds a M.A. in Print and Multimedia Journalism from Emerson College and a B.A. in English from Bridgewater State University. In his free time, Dan enjoys jogging, traveling, playing sports, touring breweries and watching football.