Verizon Business has reached an agreement to buy the video conferencing platform BlueJeans Network.
The companies did not disclose financial terms, but a spokesperson for Verizon said the company would pay less than $500 million. CNBC reported Verizon would pay about $400 million.
The announcement comes as videoconferencing usage has spiked as businesses and schools move meetings online to meet social-distancing requirements during the coronavirus pandemic. BlueJeans has primarily been a business-to-business platform.
“As the way we work continues to change, it is absolutely critical for businesses and public sector customers to have access to a comprehensive suite of offerings that are enterprise ready, secure, frictionless, and that integrate with existing tools,” Verizon Business Chief Executive Officer Tami Erwin said in a statement.
A spokesperson for BlueJeans said the company has over 15,000 customers, including Facebook, LinkedIn, RedHat, and Disney.
In an interview, Verizon Communications CEO Hans Vestberg said the company saw an opportunity to compete with Zoom, which recently saw its platform jump from 10 million daily meeting participants in December to 200 million in March.
“We see an opportunity with our distribution channel,” he said.
Vestberg said the BlueJeans teleconferencing tool would be built into Verizon’s 5G offering.
“The platform will be deeply integrated into Verizon’s 5G product roadmap, providing secure and real-time engagement solutions for high growth areas such as telemedicine, distance learning, and field service work,” Verizon said.
BlueJeans was founded about ten years ago and has raised $175 million, according to Crunchbase.
According to the statement, BlueJeans founders and key management will join Verizon and employees will become Verizon employees upon closing of the deal.