"Stickiness" recently took on a whole new meaning for Nice Systems.
The global provider of intent-based solutions for customer interactions recently announced its acquisition of eglue, a maker of real-time decision-making and guidance solutions for contact centers. Terms of the deal include $29 million cash with the potential of $6 million more if certain post-acquisition conditions are met, according to a statement by the two companies.
The purchase of eglue is intended to allow Nice to incorporate a customer's contact history into real-time solutions. A customer who has previously reached out about a given problem to the contact center (via phone, Web, chat, or text) can be placed on real-time alert. The agent will receive that customer's complete correspondence history, across all channels, with suggested solutions to solve the customer's problem.
"There's very, very specific capabilities with this acquisition" says Udi Ziv, Nice's chief product officer and president of its enterprise products group. "First thing we're gaining is expertise. [Eglue has] a very sophisticated rules engine that can take a lot of input in real-time.... Eglue has very nice technology that can monitor what's happening in the [agent's] screen and, in an unobtrusive way, can guide the agent over the existing system."
"What eglue sells, Nice can imbed within its suite and use to enhance its suite," affirmed Donna Fluss, president of DMG Consulting.
Strong, positive customer reactions to previous eglue offerings were a prominent factor in the acquisition, Ziv says. "We have partnered with eglue in the past," he notes. "We have seen the customers' reaction. We were so positive that this needs to be such an important, core part of our offering."
Ziv adds that the deal will not affect existing partnerships, asserting that Nice Systems and eglue have common customers, increasing the number of opportunities for up-selling or cross-selling.
"Eglue had a very small customer base," Fluss says, "[but] there is anticipated to be some overlap between customers."
"We're seeing customers that are more demanding than ever, mostly because they have more information," Ziv says. "[They are] more demanding and know exactly what they need." He notes that many communication channels such as text, chat, and social media are becoming increasingly legitimate ways for consumers to interact with companies. "Now it's very easy to interact because of these multiple channels," he says. "All other channels are growing exponentially."
With many enterprises seeing the number of customer interactions double every two to two and a half years, Ziv argues, contact centers addressing problems strictly with phone calls are "one-dimensional." Some contact centers, he adds, "completely miss that the Web and the voice have something in relationship with each other." The result, he suggests, is that these contact centers miss out on a powerful and effective hybrid medium of interacting with customers.
The eglue acquisition is merely the latest in a recent string of deals by Nice, a buying spree that has included Fortent, Syfact, Hexagon, Orsus, and Lamda.
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