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 | March 14, 2016 |


LiveOps Cloud Celebrates Debut at Enterprise Connect

LiveOps Cloud Celebrates Debut at Enterprise Connect Following its December 2015 spin-out, LiveOps shares what's new with the company and its cloud contact center platform.

Following its December 2015 spin-out, LiveOps shares what's new with the company and its cloud contact center platform.

As I noted in my January slideshow, "Top Contact Center Stories of 2015," the carving of LiveOps Cloud Platform out of the LiveOps business process outsourcing business was among the hottest contact center news of 2015. That formal announcement notwithstanding, the true "reveal" for LiveOps Cloud took place last week at Enterprise Connect in Orlando, Fla.

LiveOps kicked off the celebration last Sunday night by giving key contact center analysts an in-depth presentation on and live demonstration of the company's new platform, CxEngage.

From my perspective, I see five key takeaways from LiveOps Cloud and the CxEngage platform. They are:

  • M&A potential- The December acquisition by private equity firm Marlin Equity Partners gives LiveOps "plenty of funding," CEO Vasili Triant told analysts. With that, he added, "we are looking to make three to four acquisitions."

    CTO Jeff Thompson talked about one area of focus for M&A activity: workforce optimization technology tuck-ins. "Having worked for other contact center vendors (e.g., Genesys), I understand the value of bringing workforce management and quality monitoring onto the platform," he said.

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) - Like Interactive Intelligence has done with PureCloud, LiveOps has deployed CxEngage in AWS data centers. Unlike Interactive, however, LiveOps announced general availability of its service with global deployment in five AWS regions -- geo-redundancy in the Americas (Virginia and Oregon) and EMEA (Dublin and Frankfurt), and a single site in Asia (Tokyo). In addition, Thompson strongly hinted that LiveOps might deploy in India once AWS follows through on its announced plans to open that region later this year.

  • Microservices architecture - LiveOps built CxEngage using microservices, which is certainly the tech term -- and architecture -- du jour. Microservices is a software architecture style in which complex applications comprise small, independent processes communicating with each other using language-agnostic APIs. Other vendors hyping their uses of microservices include Cisco, with the Spark Platform, and Interactive, with PureCloud.

  • Software orientation - LiveOps Cloud will be a software provider, an application-only company. "We are no longer terminating the B channel on the platform," described Thompson, in reference to ISDN lingo for the "bearer" or communications channel (versus the "D" or "data" channel, which carries the software intelligence).

    Customers will have several choices for dial tone -- i.e., ways of delivering interactions to the LiveOps Cloud application. Using long-term partner Twilio is one option. Another is delivery by a service provider, perhaps in conjunction with a BroadSoft-based unified communications offer.

  • Early Success -LiveOps gained one of its early CxEngage customers -- a 1,000 seat competitive win from a regional cloud contact center provider in the U.K. -- in partnership with a U.K. service provider.

    An even bigger deal is with Mitel, with which LiveOps has partnered since 2014. Since acquiring Aastra in late 2013, Mitel has been hosting a contact center cloud disaster-recovery solution on the Intecom Pointspan platform Aastra announced in 2000. The customer, a major systems integrator, has added 280 customers and 17,500 agents to the service over the years. Mitel chose CxEngage -- with its global support capability -- as the new platform for the service.

    Not surprisingly, the new platform and delivery model led Mitel to evaluate whether LiveOps Cloud was still the optimal cloud contact center partner for its business. One of the reasons the company has re-committed to LiveOps is the strong geographic coverage enabled by the use of AWS, Mitel's Brian Spencer, GM for contact center, told me.

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