The new business communications venture formed by NEC and Koninklijke Philips Electronics is ready for business, the companies said Wednesday.NEC and Philips have completed a deal announced last year under which the Japanese manufacturer agreed to purchase 60 percent of the Dutch company\u2019s business communications unit, the companies said.NEC Philips Unified Solutions extends work the two companies have been doing since 2003 on the use of IP technology in enterprise communications systems. The venture offers small and medium-size businesses in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region a range of IP-based communication products and services, including voice-over-IP systems, management systems and messaging. Businesses will benefit from the combined research and development activities, according to the companies. Existing customers can continue to rely on the proven Sopho iS3000 range of communications systems, which remains fully supported and enhanced with new functionality addressing the latest market requirements, they said.The joint venture is part of NEC\u2019s global strategy to achieve over 10 percent share of the enterprise communications market worldwide, according to the Japanese manufacturer. To this end, the company is investing significantly in the development of platforms and applications that can be sold on a global scale.-John Blau, IDG News ServiceCheck out our CIO News Alerts and Tech Informer pages for more updated news coverage.