Bandwidth Inc.

As seen in the September 30, 2019 INCOMPAS eNewsletter

Bandwidth Inc.
Executive Offices: 
Raleigh, N.C.‚Äč

Q: What does your company do and how long has it been in operation? 
Bandwidth was founded in 1999 and it is proud to be the network behind some of the largest brands in the world. Our voice, messaging, 9-1-1 and phone number management services are built on our own nationwide 48-state facilities-based CLEC. Our API-first mentality separates us from other legacy SIP providers.

We started as a broadband reseller and were ranked 4th fastest growing privately held company by 2007. In 2008, we built our 48-state CLEC, and by 2010 were offering cloud-based business voice services. In 2011, we acquired Dash Carrier Services, a 9-1-1 access platform and network that we have since integrated into our core business as one of our innovative, industry-leading API-driven services. In 2013, we launched an API platform that allowed communication service providers access to our network without SIP infrastructure. In 2017, we took our company public with a successful IPO. In 2018, we built a facilities-based 27 LATA Feature Group D network for toll-free. In 2019, we are expanding that Feature Group D network and are focused on building and expanding services in partnership with our customer’s growing business needs.

Q: Please tell us about company’s top executives and the work that they are doing in our industry.
David Morken, co-founder, CEO and chairman, is also the co-founder, chairman and former CEO of Republic Wireless. Morken is the co-founder of Durham Cares. Prior to founding Bandwidth in 1999, Morken served on active duty in the Marine Corps as a Judge Advocate and Headquarters Company Commander. He received a B.A. in Political Science from Oral Roberts University and a J.D. from the University of Notre Dame Law School.

W. Christopher Matton has served as General Counsel of Bandwidth since 2010, providing support and counsel for corporate, human resources, intellectual property, legal and regulatory matters. Prior to joining Bandwidth, Matton was a partner at Kilpatrick Stockton LLP. He also previously served on the founding team and board of managers of Veritas Collaborative, an eating disorder treatment hospital system. Matton has worked with companies ranging from early-stage to publicly traded companies and has represented clients in connection with venture capital financings, private equity financings, mergers and acquisitions, public and private offerings of securities and other corporate matters. Matton earned a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from Wake Forest University where he also served as the Executive Editor of the Wake Forest Law Review.

Noreen Allen, chief marketing officer, is responsible for building the Bandwidth brand and driving revenue across all lines of business. For the past 16 years, she’s held leadership positions with both private and publicly traded companies. She excels at building powerful, category-leading brands that help to transform companies at various stages. Most recently, Allen served as vice president, Global Marketing for e-commerce software provider, ChannelAdvisor. Prior to that, she was vice president, Marketing for Hosted Solutions, a leader in the cloud computing market that was acquired by Windstream Corp. in late 2010 for $310 million. From 2005 to 2008, Allen served as vice president of Marketing for Motricity (now Voltari), a provider of mobile data infrastructure solutions, where she was instrumental in building the brand and growing revenue from $10 million to over $100 million prior to the company’s IPO. Prior to that, she spent five years as vice president, Marketing with SpectraSite Communications, a wireless infrastructure provider that was sold to American Tower in 2005 for $3.3 billion.

Scott Mullen, chief technology officer, is responsible for the development, engineering, operations and overall technical strategy of the Bandwidth platforms and services. Mullen is a seasoned technologist with nearly 20 years of experience in engineering and software development. He has deep experience in building highly scalable software platforms and has built development teams capable of scaling with the business in high growth communications companies. Prior to Bandwidth, Mullen worked for Lucent Technologies designing and implementing their next generation IP platforms and applications. Mullen is a graduate of the University of Maryland Baltimore County with a degree in Computer Science.

Nick Sgroi, senior vice president of Voice Network Strategy and Products, is a proven, senior-level leader with 20 years of telecom experience and expertise. In his current role, he has full P&L responsibility for Bandwidth’s core voice portfolio, is responsible for overall network strategy, and serves as an internal subject matter expert supporting corporate development, network development and regulatory affairs.  Sgroi also serves as a board member for Nicholville Telephone Company and as an advisory board member for SOMOS.  Prior to Bandwidth, Sgroi served EarthLink for over 13 years, most notably as the general manager and vice president of Carrier Services.

Greg Rogers, head of Global Policy and Regulatory Affairs, was previously senior corporate counsel at Level 3 Communications, where he managed regulatory and public policy matters at all levels of government for over ten years. In 2010, Rogers joined Bandwidth as deputy general counsel, with a wide range of responsibilities but primarily focused on regulatory and public policy matters at the FCC and the PUCs across Bandwidth’s 48-state CLEC footprint.  Among other roles and responsibilities, Rogers is currently a member of the Board of Directors for INCOMPAS.  Greg is based out of Bandwidth’s office in Denver. 
Q: Where do you provide services?
Bandwidth owns and operates a 48-state CLEC, but leverages other Tier 1 partners for off-net phone number coverage. Bandwidth primarily supports the United States and Canada with 100% Canadian and United States coverage for 9-1-1 access and phone number management services. We provide full A-Z reach for outbound calls and messages destined to international locations and expect to deploy infrastructure in the United Kingdom and European Union by the end of 2019.
Q: What types of products and/or services do you offer your customers?
Bandwidth has four portfolios of products, which empower our customers with access to voice, messaging, 9-1-1, and phone number management services from the cloud.

  • Voice: Bandwidth’s Voice portfolio includes Inbound calling, Outbound calling, Toll-Free Voice, and our Voice API, which does not require any SIP infrastructure. Our Enterprise SIP Trunking services can also be used to directly power the PSTN connectivity behind UCaaS, CCaaS, and Conferencing platforms. 
  • Messaging: Bandwidth’s complete messaging portfolio has a solution for nearly any SMS, MMS or group messaging use case imaginable. Developers can use our robust API platform to build their own messaging application, or integrate directly into a CRM or other existing solution. Toll-free SMS and the new Local A2P API offer innovative, new routes for high-volume messaging use cases like appointment reminders, shipment notifications, or customer loyalty and retention campaigns. 
  • 9-1-1: Bandwidth’s E9-1-1 for VoIP and Unified Communications solution routes emergency calls to the roughly 6,000 9-1-1 call centers nationwide and delivers pre-provisioned caller location information. E9-1-1 Dynamic Location Routing supports highly nomadic environments by using real-time location information to route 9-1-1 calls. Both solutions include on-site notification of key personnel during a 9-1-1 call, and are compatible with leading enterprise communications platforms from Cisco, Avaya, Microsoft and more. 
  • Numbers: Bandwidth currently has millions of actively assigned phone numbers on our network and gives our customers the ability to manage, order and provision numbers using either our Dashboard or API.  Customers come to us for our robust phone number management capabilities and rich feature-set including : real-time ordering, activation, and provisioning, triggered and bulk porting, real-time port out validation, detailed call records, line access features such as CNAM, LIDB and directory assistance. 

Q: What is your target customer base?
Bandwidth’s customers span three main categories. First, Bandwidth directly serves large, more sophisticated enterprise customers by providing SIP trunking replacement services, 9-1-1 access, and the option to directly power various UCaaS, CCaaS and conferencing platforms. Our second customer base comprises of software companies looking to integrate voice, messaging, number, or 9-1-1 functionality into their applications and products via API. Third, Bandwidth serves VoIP resellers and carriers looking for direct access to IP-based wholesale  services to supplement or create new offerings for their end customers. Some of our notable customers include Cisco (Tropo, Webex and Broadsoft), Microsoft (Teams, Skype for Business, GroupMe), Google (Home, AdWords, and Fi, GSuite and Others), RingCentral, Genesys, Zoom, BlueJeans, 8x8 and more. 

  • Local Exchange Carrier: Ironton Telecom - Since 1909, Ironton Telephone Company had provided dial tone service to 610-799 and 610-769 exchanges in Pennsylvania. As a TDM-based rural provider, it was concerned about the impact CABS reform would have on their business and revenue erosion from wireless carriers. They did however see a tremendous opportunity for growth by making the move to IP. In becoming their community’s go-to source for IP-based services, they could expand features and gain new tools to counter revenue loss from wireless competitors. The Challenge: Ironton is a traditional wireline provider with minimal background in IP. Plus, for their legacy footprint they had an existing 9-1-1 solution in place. They needed to quickly figure out how to leverage IP with minimal capital expense, while still meeting end users’ 9-1-1 needs. The Solution: Bandwidth Virtual Network Expansion; a single source solution providing Ironton access to over 7,100 rate centers across the nation, to include 9-1-1 support. Ironton made the Bandwidth Network – to include not just the IP-based telecom components but also Bandwidth’s dedicated support team – their own. By providing a single source for voice and 9-1-1, Ironton minimizes operational headaches and third party dependencies. “In the 1-1/2 years we’ve been working with Bandwidth, they’ve helped us to continue to advance with the times, just like we’ve been doing for the last 104 years.”
  • Enterprise Software (UCaaS): Microsoft  - Microsoft Teams (Skype for Business) has been a Bandwidth customer since 2011. Skype for Business came to Bandwidth wanting to offer voice calling functionality -- phone numbers, number porting, the ability to bridge phone numbers, and a way to integrate PSTN calls into their existing Skype platform. Bandwidth’s all-IP voice network and accompanying APIs for phone number management made expanding easy, and played an integral role in Skype’s growth - doubling in size every 24 weeks since integrating with Bandwidth. 
  • Enterprise Software (Conferencing): Zoom - Zoom has relied on Bandwidth since 2016 for PSTN connectivity for both its Zoom Conferencing flagship product as well as its newly launched Zoom Phone product. Powering billions of SIP minutes per year, Zoom’s customers such as LVMH rely on Bandwidth’s all-IP voice network for local phone numbers, toll-free phone numbers, access to 9-1-1 emergency services, as well as SIP connectivity and text messaging functionality.
  • VoIP Reseller: - is in the business of delivering a holistic self-service communications platform alongside the telephony hardware necessary to serve the needs of individuals and small businesses. When Bandwidth began discussions with we realized that they were spending an inordinate amount of time functioning as their own RespOrg, incurring significant overhead through time spent juggling carrier relationships, optimizing their own toll-free routes, navigating outages themselves, and troubleshooting quality issues. None of these functions were core to their business as a small business communications platform provider and VAR, so Bandwidth proposed taking over RespOrg duties from Bandwidth grew up in the carrier space, so our industry knowledge, carrier relationships, and telecom roots run deep. We have dedicated resources that optimize toll-free routes to keep costs at a minimum, a network that is built for redundancy and resiliency, and teams devoted to keeping customers and porting happy. In the end, Bandwidth was able to convince to let go of being their own RespOrg, and allow Bandwidth to pick up those duties. By doing so, was able to lower their overhead related to legacy telecom management, in favor of time spent focusing on serving their own customers by beefing up their platform and services.
  • Enterprise Customer: PH TECH - PH Tech offers a variety of tools and processes to help community based health plans manage, contract with, and pay the provider they work with. In order to effectively provide these services, PH Tech operates call centers across the United States, leveraging the Genesys PureCloud contact center solution. It was critical for PH Tech to maintain uptime in their call centers, so in an effort to achieve more direct control and visibility into their telephony, they chose to leverage Genesys’ BYOC (bring your own carrier) solution. PH Tech’s legacy carrier at the time was not able to support the solution, so they came to Bandwidth. Bandwidth enabled PH Tech to decouple the embedded telephony behind PureCloud, contracting directly with us to provide access to phone numbers, inbound, outbound, and toll-free voice services. By coming to Bandwidth, PH Tech was able to empower their call center admins with access to self-serve using the Bandwidth Dashboard. Those admins could then directly control disaster recovery and IP failover in real time, eliminating a single point of failover and mitigating down-time risk. They were also able to instantly order, provision, and manage numbers and connectivity for their work stations so they could better respond to the demands of seasonality.

Q: What are the biggest challenges that your company faces and how is your company overcoming these challenges?
Bandwidth operates a nationwide CLEC network footprint that it incorporates into a state-of the-art, all IP-based network platform that supports a wide range of software focused innovative communication service providers in a rapidly changing communications marketplace.  Ensuring a fair, competitively neutral, non-discriminatory operating environment that strikes the appropriate balance between necessary regulatory oversight and free-market driven outcomes is of paramount importance to Bandwidth.  As has been true since the introduction of competitive carriers, protecting the rights of innovative entrants that strive to meet consumer demands in the marketplace but require access and interoperability with incumbent networks with outsized marketplace leverage is critical. Technological advances constantly present new and different scenarios that outstrip current legal and regulatory frameworks and Bandwidth is challenged to keep pace with competitive forces while also striving to shape these new legal and marketplace environments.  Among the key challenges that Bandwidth is currently working hard to overcome are those associated with 9-1-1, robocalling, messaging and non-discriminatory traffic exchange generally.  

Q: What are your competitive advantages; what sets you apart from other companies?
We pride ourselves on the ability to provide a full solutions package for anyone looking to integrate communications services into their, or their customers’ business. With our owned and operated all-IP voice network, we support the ability to scale with reliable and consistent quality to all enterprises that we serve. Integrating our network with our Communications Platform provides us competitive advantages that include in-depth enterprise support, real-time network visibility, number management control, market leadership in messaging, and the most modern and complete API access to public safely available today. Our 9-1-1 Access solution is based on both NENA and VoIP 9-1-1 “i-2” and NENA Next Generation 9-1-1 “i3” standards.

Q: How is the evolving communications marketplace impacting your business model?
Bandwidth’s ability to navigate the evolving communications marketplace is our greatest strength. With a focus on expanding and making our existing network as reliable and resilient as possible, we design our products and services for our customer’s business needs. As the market and our customers evolve, so do we.
Q: Describe your relationship with INCOMPAS. How long have you been a member? Why did you decide to join the association? 
While Bandwidth was an experienced participant in the INCOMPAS trade shows, Bandwidth decided to  join the association as a member in 2016 for the first time.  Bandwidth joined at a time that INCOMPAS appeared to be changing its historical marketplace and public policy focus from traditional CLEC oriented matters to supporting a broader set of innovative technology driven service providers and their needs. 

Bandwidth continues to be interested in having valuable business relationships and networking opportunities but is increasingly interested in the public policy advocacy matters that INCOMPAS is able to support for competitive providers in today’s marketplace. Finally, Greg Rogers’s role on the INCOMPAS Board of Directors allows Bandwidth and INCOMPAS to help drive critical and ever-evolving competitive policy initiatives.

Q: How have you benefited from INCOMPAS membership? 
Bandwidth joined INCOMPAS at a time that some of its most strategic customers were also joining. We value the ability to cultivate long-standing relationships and establish business opportunities at INCOMPAS trade shows and events. Since becoming a member, Bandwidth has likely benefited more from the public policy support that INCOMPAS offers its members and that remains our view of where INCOMPAS can provide unique value.