Voice over IP software/softswitch company, Syndeo Corp., is said to be out of business. The news comes from prety reliable sources, though I have not been able to confirm the news with the company. I sent an email to the company PR lady, but it bounced back. The company had raised a total of $98 million in venture capital funding from the likes of Redpoint Ventures, Comcast Interactive Capital, large cable operators, and others like Sumitomo, Sun Microsystems, Meritech Capital, Intel Capital, Scientific Atlanta.
Ironically, the company’s strongest backers, i.e. the cable companies ended up shunning the company’s products and instead opted for offerings from Motorola, Nortel and Lucent Technologies, amongst others. Comcast ran a few trials with the company but it never really translated into serious dollars for the start-up which at one time was seen as the shining stars in the packet telephony business.
Syndeo was one of the major boosters of a class 5 softswitch technology, which was very much in fashion with investors five years ago. The company was started in 1999, right at the peak of technology/telecom bubble.
Since then the business has gone through some serious retrenchment and only a handful survive. Among the leading players are Nortel Networks, Sonus Networks, Motorola, Teklelec, Lucent Technologies and Veraz Networks, which had a roller coaster ride as well. According to Synergy Research, the top four vendors for soft switches in third quarter of 2004 were Nortel, Sonus, Motorola and Teklelec. Syndeo shut down is symptomatic of the malaise that surrounds VoIP: despite all the hype, the actual deployments in live networks are still far and few.