Verizon brings cloud-based Unified Communications to Marriott International hotel chain

Verizon Enterprise Solutions (NYSE: VZ) has won a multi-year agreement with Marriot International to deploy its cloud-hosted voice solution that was specifically designed for the hospitality industry.

Marriott is the first customer that is deploying Verizon's Hospitality Communications Express system. Under the terms of the agreement, Verizon will serve as a strategic technology provider to the hotel chain.

"Verizon's innovative cloud technology solutions, world-class network quality and expansive global capabilities make them an ideally suited business partner as we continually strive to reduce costs and improve efficiencies by moving our technology to the cloud," said Steve Bearden, director of IT for voice, mobility and unified communications for Marriott International, in a release. "This solution brings productive collaboration tools to our employees and gives Marriott new technology that will improve overall guest service."

All of the Marriott properties will get access to various features: a fully managed cloud-hosted voice solution that will reduce the need for onsite hardware and IT support; a way to replace legacy PBX systems; integration with hotel property management systems (PMS software); UC functionality; and Verizon 4G LTE wireless failover for business continuity if the wired network goes down.

Winning deals like this latest one with Marriott is important for Verizon, particularly as it represents how it is getting more business customers to purchase next-gen services like cloud and UC. However, the near-term reality is that the sales of next-gen cloud services continue to be offset by declines in legacy TDM-based services, a trend that continued into the third quarter of 2014.

Stopping short of proclaiming a major turnaround, Verizon's CFO Fran Shammo told investors during the recent UBS 42nd Annual Global Media and Communications Conference that it is seeing new activity in the federal government and across the overall enterprise market.

Despite these gains, Shammo said it is "going to take us about 8-12 months before you see dollars in the revenue stream because we're always on a lag from this."

For more:
- see the release

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