CX Acquisitions Abound During Early December

Tech Mahindra, All for One Group, Clarivate, 8x8, and ConnectWise All Extend Their Brands

Tech Mahindra Acquires Activus

Tech Mahindra, a key provider from India of information technology (IT) and business process outsourcing (BPO) services, announced on December 3 that it was acquiring Orlando, Florida-based Activus Connect.

Terms of the deal were not available or being discussed at the time the acquisition was announced, but new information since then suggests that the deal is worth $62 million. The acquisition is thought to strengthen Tech Mahindra’s end-to-end CX portfolio and bolster its capabilities in emerging workplace solutions, specifically in the work-at-home CX management domain to which Activus Connect lays claim as its principal area of expertise.

Tech Mahindra will also leverage the customizable omnichannels of Activus Connect and its artificial intelligence (AI)-powered compliance analytics platform, called SmartVirtual, to support and elevate chat, email, phone, text, video, and social experiences.

A subsidiary of the Indian conglomerate Mahindra Group, Tech Mahindra is a major player in its own right, with more than 125,000 employees spread across 90 countries and reported revenue in 2021 of $5.2 billion. Activus Connect has 1,750 employees and reported revenue in 2020 of $17.0 million.

All for One Group Acquires blue-zone

The German consulting and IT company All for One Group SE announced on December 2 the signing of a contract to acquire all shares of cloud and mobile computing specialist and fellow German firm blue-zone AG. Financial terms of the deal will not be disclosed, as mutually agreed upon by both parties, the two companies confirm.

The buyout is the newest addition in a string of acquisitions made this year by All for One Group, following its purchase of SNP Poland and Swiss ASC Group.

This acquisition will expand the CX portfolio of All for One Group to now include mobile, cloud-based solutions for managing sales teams. “By acquiring blue-zone, we are, of course, expanding our Group CX profile,” said Michael Zitz, chief sales officer at All for One Group. “We see enormous potential for mobile, cloud-based sales force management solutions both among our 3,000 customers and in the marketplace in general,” Zitz added.

The core business of blue-zone AG, named partner of the year by Microsoft Azure in 2015, is the development of digital sales and services systems for cloud and mobile computing. Its best-known product is polumana evo, a mobile field-force automation app used by major global corporations to manage sales teams. The program does this by providing huge volumes of both online and offline data, and by seamlessly connecting back-office processes to sales operations in the Azure cloud.

Clarivate Acquires ProQuest

On December 1, the London-based research analytics firm Clarivate plc announced it had completed the acquisition of ProQuest, the global information content and technology company from Ann Arbor, Michigan, for $5.3 billion, including repayment of ProQuest debt.

The acquisition, consisting of approximately $4.0 billion in cash and $1.3 billion of equity, followed in the wake of a May 17 commitment to buy out ProQuest from the Cambridge Information Group and other investors.

Jerre Stead, executive chairman and CEO of Clarivate, said the acquisition will empower research-focused organizations worldwide. “Acquiring ProQuest gives Clarivate a compelling opportunity to offer multi-disciplinary curated content from one of the world’s largest collections and best-of-breed SaaS software solutions serving our strategic partners at governments, corporations, academia, and public libraries across the globe,” he expressed, using the acronym for software as a service in describing the best-in-class solutions.

The merger will result in a combined headcount of more than 11,000 employees serving 45,000 customers in more than 200 countries, Stead noted.

8×8 Acquires Fuze

8×8, the provider of cloud-based unified communications and virtual contact center solutions from Campbell, California, announced on December 1 that it had entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Fuze, a cloud-based communications and collaboration solution for the enterprise headquartered in Boston.

Under the terms of the agreement, 8×8 will acquire Fuze for approximately $250 million in stock and cash, with the transaction expected to close during 8×8’s 4Q period. The acquisition aims to accelerate innovation in the 8×8 eXperience Communications as a Service (XCaaS) offering, while also expanding the firm’s enterprise customer base and global presence.

The migration to cloud-based communications is creating a multibillion-dollar opportunity as organizations worldwide shift to hybrid work models, said David Sipes, CEO of 8×8. “Our XCaaS strategy is defining and shaping the future of the cloud communications industry as we drive innovation to help our customers meet their changing business requirements,” Sipes noted.

Acquiring Fuze, which has global operations intended to deliver a seamless CX between unified communications and contact centers, will also provide 8×8 with significant cross-sell opportunities through its omnichannel contact center to support enterprise customer engagement efforts, according to the news release from 8×8.

ConnectWise Acquires SmileBack

On December 1, IT software solutions company ConnectWise announced it had acquired SmileBack, the creator of a CX solution designed specifically for managed service providers (MSPs).

The cost of the acquisition was not disclosed by Tampa, Florida-based ConnectWise, which offers an integrated and security-centric platform aimed at driving business efficiency via business automation, IT documentation, and data management. However, company executives have said the acquisition will help MSPs become more aware of customer feedback through the surveying and reporting tools of SmileBack, which is headquartered in Wilmington, Delaware.

Chris Timms, executive vice president of growth and emerging business at ConnectWise, described the acquisition as a “logical and natural evolution” of the longstanding relationship between the two companies.

Immediate visibility into the perception of customers is important for businesses to recognize what they are doing right and where improvement might be needed, he said. “With quantitative and qualitative customer insights, our IT solution provider partners can improve the efficiency of their operations, retain more customers, and go to market more effectively,” Timms added. ConnectWise partners stand to benefit from advanced CX analytics thanks to the acquisition, the ConnectWise news release noted.

Author Information

Alex is responsible for writing about trends and changes that are impacting the customer experience market. He had served as Principal Editor at Village Intelligence, a Los Angeles-based consultancy on technology impacting healthcare and healthcare-related industries. Alex was also Associate Director for Content Management at Omdia and Informa Tech, where he produced white papers, executive summaries, market insights, blogs, and other key content assets. His areas of coverage spanned the sectors grouped under the technology vertical, including semiconductors, smart technologies, enterprise & IT, media, displays, mobile, power, healthcare, China research, industrial and IoT, automotive, and transformative technologies.

At IHS Markit, he was Managing Editor of the company’s flagship IHS Quarterly, covering aerospace & defense, economics & country risk, chemicals, oil & gas, and other IHS verticals. He was Principal Editor of analyst output at iSuppli Corp. and Managing Editor of Market Watch, a fortnightly newsletter highlighting significant analyst report findings for pitching to the media. He started his career in writing as an Editor-Reporter for The Associated Press.


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