SOURCE: Ribbit

December 17, 2007 08:00 ET

Silicon Valley Starts a Phone Company

Valley-Based Ribbit Unveils Technology, Team and Business Model for Creating and Serving the New Telephony Marketplace

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA--(Marketwire - December 17, 2007) - A new telephony startup came out of stealth today, aiming to become "Silicon Valley's first phone company." Ribbit unveiled a new platform for developing telephony services and a new business model for serving the new global telephony market. In addition, the company formally announced a diverse team of technologists, business leaders and a community of third-party developers that it has recruited over the past two years to execute on its mission.

The company also unveiled some of the first applications from its partner and 600-plus developer community, including an integration with salesforce.com. The first applications illustrate the kind of innovation that the company hopes to deliver to both the consumer and business marketplace.

"The world doesn't need another phone company," said Ted Griggs, co-founder and CEO at Ribbit. "What it needs is a new kind of phone company, one that liberates voice from its current confines -- devices, plans and business models -- and more readily integrates into the workflow of our professional and personal lives. We've been working hard these first two years to put together the right team, technology, and business model to meet this opportunity, and we're finally ready to go to market."

The Ribbit Platform: Liberating Voice from Its Current Confines

At the core of Ribbit's technology offering is a sophisticated, open platform that enables developers to bridge the worlds of traditional telephony and the Web. The Ribbit SmartSwitch™ -- evolved from a Lucent-tested CLASS 5 softswitch -- and open Flash/Flex-based API (application program interface) enables non-telephony developers to quickly build innovative, rich voice applications and integrate them into Web sites, communities and applications. By connecting voice from any Flash-enabled browser to the PSTN (public switched telephone network) and new VoIP (voice over IP) networks, over 750 million computers become the next generation of phones with developers deciding how they work. With an assortment of back-office and service delivery infrastructure, the platform also enables developers to not only build services, but sell them as well.

"It's a very innovative idea -- not only does Ribbit provide developers with a way to easily integrate voice into almost any kind of Web application, they will also provide a platform for testing and selling new services," said Will Stofega, Research Manager, VoIP Services at IDC. "Ribbit's arrival comes at a time when telephony and computing are truly converging."

The Ribbit Community -- Business Leaders, Tech Leaders and Third-Party Developers

Ribbit has organized a diverse team of business leaders, technologists, partners and over 600 third-party software developers. The executive team boasts talent from a broad range of markets and disciplines, from traditional telephony, enterprise software, Web-based software development and open-source. Technology partners include salesforce.com and Adobe, a catalyst in helping to mobilize the Flash and Flex developer community, one of Ribbit's core constituencies. The partner and developer communities have been deeply engaged in building the first applications on Ribbit's open platform, a few of which are now coming to market, including a workflow integration with salesforce.com.

In the first quarter of 2008, the Ribbit for Salesforce workflow integration will be available for salesforce.com customers via the AppExchange. "Ribbit is a great example of the new breed of innovative partners that salesforce.com is working closely with to deliver the potential of the Force.com platform," said Clarence So, Chief Marketing Officer at salesforce.com. "Mobile voice in Salesforce workflow is a combination that is sure to bring productivity breakthroughs to many Salesforce customers."

The Ribbit Business Model -- Serving the Long Tail of the New Telephony Market

In the first quarter of 2008, Ribbit will open its service to consumers featuring the first innovations from its developer community. Also in the first quarter, the company will sell commercial and enterprise packages to developers selling services that utilize the Ribbit platform. Both the consumer and the enterprise markets will be key areas of focus for Ribbit as it continues to engage the developer community. One market in particular -- small-to-medium size businesses -- holds special promise.

"Ribbit's founding premise is that voice is valuable, and particularly valuable when mobile-web-and fixed-communications are merged into and made part of business work flow. Most companies focus on lower cost dial tone and pre-packaged features. Already in our work with our partner and developer communities, we've found an untapped need for voice in high-value workflow applications," said Crick Waters, co-founder and VP of Strategy and Business Development at Ribbit. "We firmly believe that there's a long-tail market for high-value telephony applications, and we're building the infrastructure that enables these applications to be delivered."

About Ribbit

Ribbit is working with the best and brightest technology and business leaders to start and develop Silicon Valley's first phone company. Our mission is to "liberate voice from the device, and integrate it into the workflow of life, both business and personal." By providing a world-class telephone carrier infrastructure -- and the first open platform for Internet and voice developers -- we are helping to unleash innovation across the entire telephony marketplace, from the development of leading-edge consumer voice services to the integration of voice with the world's best business applications.

Ribbit headquarters are located in Mountain View, CA. Ribbit has received investment from Alsop-Louie Partners, Allegis Capital and KPG Ventures. For more information about Ribbit, please visit www.ribbit.com.

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