Global HQ: Luxembourg Website: www.skype.com
Global leader: Josh Silverman, CEO
Local leader: Dan Neary, vice-president and GM, Asia-Pacific region
Core activity: Internet telephony
Revenue: US$406.2 million (2010, first half)
Key customers: Rip Curl, Australian Sailing team, ACE (Australian Communication Exchange)
The recently launched Skype Connect 1.0 joins Skype to IP-enabled PBX or unified communications systems, enabling businesses to use the service without having to install a Skype client on every desktop. Businesses can centrally manage and control Skype usage via the web-based Skype Manager tool. The latest beta release of Skype offers group video calls with up to 10 people, and the new Skype Channel Partner Program aims to establish a network of US channel partners to assist companies interested in using internet telephony. However, it faces new competition from Google, which has added a feature to its Gmail that allows users to make calls to phones. There’s also talk that Cisco may make a bid to buy the company.
Skype, however, is preparing for a public listing in what could be the largest IPO in the tech sector since Google in 2004. Ulrika Hedquist
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