Unified Communications Featured Article

Fuze's Big Cash Infusion to Drive UC

February 22, 2017

What can you do with $104 million these days? Just ask Fuze, which recently landed more cash in a recent funding round than any 10 of us will probably see in our lifetimes. Fuze took on $104 million following an eminently successful funding round that brought together some of investing's biggest names and would help the company drive its unified communications (UC) concept forward.

Fuze offers a powerful combination of UC materials, which when put together under the same umbrella, offer a complete and nearly omnichannel communications platform. Fuze offers short message service (SMS) operations, instant messaging tools, voice calling, and even video conferencing, which covers most everything but social media tools and faxes. Plus, the Fuze platform adds extra tools like caller ID functions to let a company know who's on the other end and even analytics functions to help derive useful information about the callers.

What's more, Fuze's systems can actually become part of other operations' technology, turning systems like Gmail and Salesforce, among others, into even more flexible versions with the addition of new UC tools.

Originally called ThinkingPhones, Fuze rebranded last year, using the name of acquired company Fuze—a video conferencing operation—as its new primary brand. The company saw investors come in from all over, including Summit Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, and several others to reach that combined $104 million mark.

This actually brings the total cash raised to $304 million thus far; after its rebranding, it staged a separate funding round that raised $112 million. With the new cash, Fuze intends to continue a global expansion effort and focus on “product innovation.” Some have even suggested that this may be Fuze's starting point to an initial public offering (IPO) stock release, though official word is thin on that subject.

Given that the company's sales were up 90 percent in 2016, and over a third of that—36 percent—came from organizations outside North America, a plan to continue global expansion isn't likely to meet with failure as it's already met with success. The plain and simple truth is that UC's impact is being felt worldwide because it so readily allows businesses to communicate worldwide without the expense of a standard communications system. A 30 minute conference call to a country halfway around the world could be eye-popping under standard systems, but not nearly so much using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) or UC tools.

Those savings, and the extra features brought in by UC, suggest that Fuze will have a ready market for some time to come. That should make some early investors very happy in the long run.

Edited by Alicia Young

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