TORONTO — Trawling for VARs and pushing for better days in its pursuit of the WAN connectivity market in Canada, Sangoma Technologies has rolled out network cards that company executives say offers complete “inside-the-box” WAN connectivity.

That was one of the messages dished out to reporters Thursday at a downtown Toronto briefing by president and CEO David Mandelstam of the Markham, Ont.-based company. He said the latest cards offer built in 56/64kbps DDS and E1/T1 DSU/CSU support. In short, the cards offer connectivity to 56/64kbps DDS line users worldwide, and E1 line users outside of North America. The WAN cards provide a complete solution, he said, indicating no other hardware is needed.

And that’s significant, he points out, because it eliminates the need for expensive, clunky equipment involved in typical WAN setups. “Our products provide very good bang for the buck compared to the competition,” he says. “Our costs are low (thanks to a virtual corporation model, which means fewer staff) and our performance is high.”

He said the latest WAN cards — which extend Sangoma’s WANpipe product line and are ideal for local VARs dealing in the small and medium-sized business arena — let users cut down on the number of required items needed for a WAN setup, including the confusing jumble of cables, routers, hubs, servers and DSU/CSU units all needed to be hooked together. “Adding equipment never adds reliability,” he says.

Indeed, the company — which pumps out WAN communication hardware and software products through both direct and indirect channels — is on a mission to get the word out about its svelte, all-in-one type network gear. In essence, the company wants to heat up the external router replacement market, he says.

“Our shtick is that the larger opportunities that we see for this company is that routers, which are devices that connect to WANs, will be moving inside the box in the same way that external modems moved inside PCs. Nobody uses external modems anymore.”

So what are some of the benefits of using Sangoma cards? That’s easy, he says, indicating a single card means fewer points of failure and savings on rack space; improved security and less power; integrated management with the server operating system; increased ease of installation and configuration; and enhanced technical support.

“There’s no magic involved – no High Priesthood in maintaining this thing.” But the push to make a name for itself won’t be easy, and convincing resellers of the benefits is rough going, company executives admit, especially given the fact that it goes head-to head with the likes of Cisco.

And while the Canadian company has been kicking around since 1984, business is better in places like Poland than right here in Canada. “One of the poorest markets for our equipment is in Canada.” But the company wants to change all that – and one way to do so is to attract more resellers. To date, the company has about 20 resellers on its books. “But they are not very active.”

He said generating interest among resellers in Canada has been tough, indicating the one-year-old distribution deal with Tech Data Canada hasn’t been as fruitful as originally anticipated. “Tech Data wasn’t a magic bullet for us. We were hoping it would be, but it wasn’t.”

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