2021 is drawing to a close and it’s been another unique year for business. Most of us took the plunge and went permanently hybrid, stretching the limit of what’s deemed smart/casual ‘WFH’ attire. Our ‘comfies’ (ok, pyjama bottoms) have never seen so much wear!
Whilst many were thrust into adopting modern technology to combat the lockdowns of 2020, in 2021 we’ve proven teams can ‘keep calm and carry on’ working efficiently wherever they’re based.
We’re excited to see how hybrid-focused solutions continue to transform our partners’ and customers’ working lives as we head into a new year, but before we all enjoy a well-earned festive break, join us in reflecting on Gamma’s highlights of 2021.
January – March
We kicked off Q1 with some news! In January, we formally welcomed our new Chief Marketing and Product Officer, Chris Wade. While Chris’s first 12 months might’ve flown by, his fresh take on our strategy and solutions is already having a profound impact on our partners and customers.
March was a jam-packed month for the Gamma family. A family which grew that bit bigger at the beginning of the month, when we declared our acquisition of Mission Labs, a leading developer of cloud contact centre applications. As part of our digital strategy, Mission Labs’ highly skilled experts enable us to extend our capabilities in the cloud communications market even further. We’re thrilled to have them on board!
Around the same time, we also unveiled our new cloud contact centre solution, Horizon Contact. This omnichannel solution, designed to aid small and medium-sized businesses, is built with the customer in mind, enabling them to provide a rich and consistent experience for voice, email, and webchat interactions.
Finally, we were delighted to report strong end of year results for 2020. Good organic growth can be credited to our extremely hard-working teams and strategic acquisitions in Europe.
April – June
To celebrate Earth Day in April, we explored how the world around us helped us during this challenging year. We are proud to be a Carbon Neutral company and 2021 has been our base year for our Carbon Net-Zero planning. Stay tuned for some more information in the year to come…
In terms of telephony, May certainly had a nice ring to it.
We started the month with the launch of our renewed business-only service in partnership with Three UK, Gamma Mobile. Our network parity with Three means Gamma Mobile users can reap the benefits of any service updates in real time. Great news for our customers, as Three was also named Ookla’s Speedtest Award™ winner for the UK’s Fastest 5G Network in the first half of 2021. As Three continues its multi-million-pound investment in network enhancements, we’re excited for the additional benefits to come. Look out for more mobile and 5G-related content on our social platforms in 2022.
Hot on the heels of our mobile announcement came the launch of PhoneLine+. In May, we brought to life this feature-rich voice call solution designed to replace traditional landlines. It’s something sure to be hailed as a saviour for micro-businesses ahead of BT’s PSTN switch off in 2025, but keep your eyes peeled for more on this subject. In the meantime, visit our dedicated landline replacement page to learn more.
Working hand in hand with Phoneline+, we also introduced our SoGEA solution. Don’t worry, it’s not just any old acronym – SoGEA stands for Single Order Generic Ethernet Access. Forget traditional phone line installations, with SoGEA you only need to place one order with Gamma for your broadband data service.
When we said we had a big year for launches, we weren’t kidding…
But that’s not all – in June, we held a virtual event for our investors and analysts, Capital Markets Day. This is a recurring event where analysts and investors join us to hear more about our strategy and financial updates, and where we received very positive feedback.
July – September
In July, we also expanded our Microsoft Teams proposition with the launch of Horizon for Teams, a bolt-on solution to Horizon, bringing the features of our leading business-grade cloud PBX within the Microsoft Teams environment.
One of our best-kept secret was then revealed in September, when we were chosen as one of a select number of partners on the Operator Connect for Microsoft Teams programme. This coveted programme is designed to enable seamless and integrated PSTN calling to Teams. Our inclusion is a real privilege, and testament to Gamma’s 15+ years’ experience delivering voice solutions for Microsoft Teams. Roll on the next 15! We can’t wait to see how our part in the programme benefits our customers and partners in 2022 and beyond.
During the same month, we also saw our Benelux subsidiaries, Dean One and gnTel become known collectively as Gamma Communications Nederland. Our CEO, Andrew Taylor put it perfectly when he commented: “This announcement not only solidifies our position but also lays the foundations for a unified Gamma across the UK and Europe.” It’s tremendous news for all involved and we couldn’t be prouder to further strengthen the Gamma brand overseas. You can read the full announcement here.
It was wonderful to be able to greet our partners in person at the return of our Channel Partner Roadshow in September. Our ‘at the movies’ theme played out at cinemas in Manchester, London and Glasgow where our teams covered how to maximise margins and support changing customer behaviours. Guests were wowed by keynote speaker Dr Kevin Fong OBE, consultant anaesthetist at UCLH, an NHS England advisor during the COVID-19 emergency, and helicopter emergency medical service with Air Ambulance Kent Surrey Sussex – and let’s not forget his work with NASA! Well, we suddenly feel incredibly lazy…
October – December
From one space expert to another, October kicked off with a big bang as we welcomed Professor Brian Cox to our annual GX Summit. Guests flooded to The British Library, where we showcased the latest transformative technology through compelling sessions from our own experts as well as speakers from Microsoft, Three UK and AWS, and Professor Cox’s out-of-this-world keynote speech on black holes.
During the same month, we got to shout about our biggest asset, our people. National Customer Service Week brought our support teams to the forefront. They spoke passionately about the changing world of work and ensuring customer experience in an increasingly virtual climate. Did you catch our series of staff interviews? If not, you can catch up on our Linkedin page. It’s the wholesome, heart-warming content you need to start the year with a smile on your face!
Remember our Capital Markets Day event in June? We repeated the experience in November with a hybrid event where we were joined by our European colleagues. You can watch both our June and November presentations here.
It was wonderful to see new and familiar faces at the Digital Transformation Expo and the UC Expo this year. We loved discussing insights with visitors at our stand and can’t wait to return next year.
We were also thrilled to have won the Best Lockdown Project/Initiative Vendor award at the CRN Channel Awards. The award recognises the innovation and exceptional support that companies have demonstrated during the pandemic. We will always support our partners and customers during difficult times, and we couldn’t be prouder to have won this award to recognise that.
Looking ahead to 2022
2021 has remained a rollercoaster for some, but the right solutions and a dedicated team will get us through any turbulent tunnels. These ‘new ways of working’ are starting to feel more familiar and more comfortable – offering flexibility, opportunities to improve work-life balance, and cushioning the blow of what might still feel like constant change.
Another guaranteed constant is our team. We’re always on hand to support you through any highs or temporary challenges. We’d also like to extend a huge thank you to our customers and partners for your continued support this year.
Let’s raise a glass to 2021! We look forward to seeing you in 2022 – be it virtually or in person.
We can do both.