I’ve got to give Level 3 Communications credit for becoming an exhibitor this year. Here is a company that was established in 1998 and went through an IPO on NASDAQ in the same year. But the fast IPO isn’t what’s amazing about Level 3. It’s the fact that it survived the Dotcom Bubble and stands here today as a Tier 1 Internet backbone provider and one of the largest telecom companies in the U.S.
As the saying goes, Whatever doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger?
Level 3 didn’t have a fancy pavilion like some of the exhibitors. Only a modest booth #1403 — a counter, a rack of marketing literature, a fairly small LCD monitor playing marketing promo, and of course, a backdrop with its logo.
In speaking with Sarah Baack, SVP of Voice Services, and Bill Long, Sr. Director of Product Management, I got a sense that Level 3 is tired of hanging out in the background. This is a company that offers a wide range of products and services: Internet, Voice, Video, and Managed. In essence, everything an enterprise would need to get UC done.
Level 3 plans to leverage both its TDM and SIP assets to aggressively target enterprises. Because it’s a carrier offering value-added products and services, the company can easily become the one-stop shop for a customer’s communications needs, especially if the customer favors a decentralized network topology. Level 3’s global network can definitely accommodate such a customer requirement in design and implementation.
Surviving the Dotcom Bubble has made Level 3 stronger. Although the company has been struggling financially in recent years, it’s good that it is doing more to spread its name in the market, perhaps a return to Enterprise Connect 2012. After all, it has something that many other UC vendors don’t have but worth touting: a world-class IP backbone.