This September the Berlin-based IP-telephony pioneer Snom celebrates its 20th anniversary. Since its founding in 1997 as a bright new tech start-up by Christian Stredicke, Snom has grown to become an international premium brand for IP desk phones, DECT phones and conferencing devices all of which are distributed by a global network of more than 25,000 value added resellers.
20 years ago, Christian Stredicke correctly predicted that the future of telephony would be digital and went on to quickly found Snom Technology. Very few people at the time agreed with his prediction, which proved to be quite an obstacle to getting any backing: The telecommunications industry didn’t see any potential, providers were still very happy to continue selling their analogue solutions and prospective end-customers were not generating any demand. In spite of these apparently insurmountable challenges, the founder’s pioneering spirit stubbornly persisted in developing a marketable IP phone.
From the very beginning, Snom focused on innovation and design. Despite some early ‘hiccups’ (the receiver on the snom 100 was given the nickname ‘the slide’), Snom quickly gained a reputation for high standards of product quality, especially with regards to audio quality, which continues to be refined and perfected in Snom’s in-house sound laboratory. Within the space of just a few years Snom became recognizable as a premium brand in millions of offices and conference rooms.
“As the first UK distributor of Snom, we have been distributing their products for over 15 years, and have always held the products in a high technical regard,” said Darren Garland, Managing Director of ProVu Communications Ltd. “In the early days, Snom’s provisioning and feature rich software created a strong differentiator, as other vendors have introduced similar capabilities we have remained loyal to Snom and continue to be a Platinum distributor for their products. Snom consistently maintain a high quality build across the range and pair that with easy to use products, Snom continues to be one of our leading product lines and it’s exciting to watch them as they start to reinvigorate their portfolio with the addition of new lines and refreshed products to take them into the next 20 years.”
Conor McCann, Managing Director of Electronic Frontier Ltd., also congratulated Snom on reaching this milestone: "Electronic Frontier has been a Platinum distributor for Snom for more than 11 years. Snom products have always been extremely popular with our customers and our support engineers. Snom exemplifies quality, durability, ease of support and trouble free functionality. We are proud to be a Snom distributor and hope to continue our successful relationship for many more years."
Towards the end of 2016, Snom was acquired by the Hong Kong-based global manufacturer VTech, ensuring that the growing German vendor would now have the support of an enterprise with around 37,000 employees and all of the advantages of the economies of scale this would provide. Advantages such as the huge potential in cutting production costs which were instantly converted into product price reductions for customers, the ability to be much more flexible in terms of customized manufacturing and to react swiftly to sudden changes in market trends. In a highly competitive industry environment, Snom can now supply partners and customers with the latest technological developments from a broader product portfolio even more efficiently and promptly. The main development of IP phones continues to be conducted in Berlin, supported by an additional 25 developers from the parent company who are working exclusively on Snom products.
“Snom can really enjoy celebrating its 20th birthday. From being an exuberant start-up, we have become an agile and highly motivated enterprise and are more than capable of meeting the future challenges of a competitive market. Compared to the same time last year, we are already showing a strong double-digit increase in revenue and in some European markets by as much as 60%!” revealed Snom CEO Gernot Sagl. “I wish to thank all of our long-standing and also recently joined employees, partners and stakeholders who have travelled with us on this journey over two decades on what has sometimes been a rocky road. Today, it really counts more than ever to be a Snom partner.”
On 9 September 2017, partners, friends and of course employees of Snom will get together in Berlin to lavishly celebrate the 20th anniversary and hear about the latest plans and offers in the pipeline.
Interviews with Snom’s founder, Christian Stredicke, and Snom’s current CEO, Gernot Sagl are available for download here.