Sheila McGee-Smith
Sheila McGee-Smith, who founded McGee-Smith Analytics in 2001, is a leading communications industry analyst and strategic consultant focused on the...
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Sheila McGee-Smith | February 27, 2013 |


Genesys Acquires Angel, Adding to Cloud, Analytics and Mid-Market Expertise

Genesys Acquires Angel, Adding to Cloud, Analytics and Mid-Market Expertise A year ago, CEO Paul Segre told analysts that while Genesys was good at M&A, new owner Permira was great at M&A.

A year ago, CEO Paul Segre told analysts that while Genesys was good at M&A, new owner Permira was great at M&A.

When Genesys was divested from Alcatel-Lucent less than 12 months ago, one of its stated intentions was to increase the size of the company's addressable market by building solutions better suited to the mid-market. Another was to by extend their SaaS-based offers. A longer term goal--articulated at the March 2012 annual Genesys analyst event by Merijn te Booij, the company's product management lead--was to deliver best-in-class customer experience analytics.

This week's announcement of an intention to acquire cloud-based self-service provider Angel helps Genesys continue to "move the ball forward" in each of these areas.

* Cloud: Angel does more than deliver 800 customers already operating contact center applications in the cloud. As noted by Genesys CEO Paul Segre in a call with industry analysts, Angel brings expertise in how to market, sell, and operate in the cloud--and a track record of 100% availability for the last 8 months.

That expertise comes in the form of approximately 150 employees who will be combined with the cloud division Genesys created in September for Genesys Connect. Angel's president, David Rennyson, will be the new head of this organization.

One of the promises of SaaS is cloud-to-cloud application integration, exemplified by the Genesys Connect application built on the Salesforce platform. This is another area where Angel brings expertise, having already developed cloud-to-cloud integrations with "literally dozens of applications," including Salesforce, Facebook, Twitter, NetSuite, and SugarCRM as well as a PayPal integration.

* Mid-market: The Angel customer base is described as including companies in the Fortune 100 as well as "a large number of mid-market customers." Angel was a company in the process of going up-market, so most of its customers are of a size similar to what Genesys is targeting for growth. Over the years, the Angel sales force sold its cloud-based solution to 800 customers. This gives Genesys a great base of mid-market SaaS sales and marketing expertise.

* Analytics: Angel brings serious experience and assets in the analytics area. The original Angel platform was designed by its owner--business intelligence company MicroStrategy--as a way to answer the question, "How do we get our BI (business intelligence) data into the hands of executives on their mobile phones?" A fully on-demand, embedded component of the company's voice application is Angel CX Analytics, which provides BI analytics and reporting of call data so customers can make iterative changes in real time to enhance the caller experience.

A year ago, Paul Segre told analysts that while Genesys was good at M&A, new owner Permira was GREAT at M&A. Those talents have clearly been put to good use; Genesys has made three very targeted acquisitions in less than a year. Two of them are of cloud-based application companies, UTOPY and Angel. The third, LM Sistemas, broadened their coverage in the rapidly-growing South American market.

Asked what the biggest challenge will be with the acquisition, Segre's answer was, "Challenges are always on the execution side." While that may sound simplistic to some, it reminded me of Cisco's John Chambers--execution is one of his favorite words and perhaps the best mindset to have post-acquisition.

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