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No Jitter Roll: Five for Friday

In this week's No Jitter Roll, we look at contact center portfolio expansion, funding and acquisition news, as well as an announcement on robocalling.

Mitel Commits to CCaaS

Mitel has put a stake in the ground on contact center as a service (CCaaS), this week announcing general availability of MiCloud Engage, a standalone omnichannel platform for contact center operations of between 5,000 and 10,000 agents, said Jon Brinton, SVP Contact Center Solutions and Global Cloud Operations at Mitel, in a No Jitter briefing.

The MiCloud Engage over-the-top (OTT) platform represents a strategic shift for Mitel, which traditionally has focused on integrating its contact center and UC portfolios. With MiCloud Engage, an OEM product that Brinton said has been in controlled introductions for some time (though never formally announced), Mitel can serve companies not looking to associate their contact center and UC platforms, as well as better compete against OTT providers such as Five9 and Nice inContact (for more details on Mitel's shifting strategy and MiCloud Engage, watch for additional No Jitter coverage to follow next week from contact center analyst Sheila McGee-Smith).

In addition, Mitel announced general availability of the latest release of MiCloud Flex (formerly MiCloud Enterprise), a contact center-UC platform featuring omnichannel and open APIs for integration with third-party applications. MiCloud Flex serves up to 1,000 agents.


Slack Raises More Funds

Slack, known in its early days for its regular financing rounds and skyrocketing valuation, announced it has raised another $427 million in a Series H investment round. This adds to the $841 million the company previously raised and brings Slack's valuation to north of $7.1 billion.

Dragoneer Investment Group and General Atlantic led this round, which includes accounts advised by T. Rose Price Associates as well as by Wellington Management, Baillie Gifford and Sands Capital, and existing investors.

Slack touts more than eight million daily active users, and more than 70,000 paid teams. The additional funding will better position it to take advantage of the "massive opportunity" taking place as people rethink how they work, Slack wrote a blog post announcing the funding.

Nice Closes Mattersight Acquisition

Enterprise software provider Nice has completed its acquisition of Mattersight, which provides advanced analytics for driving personalized real-time customer service interactions.

Specifically, Nice will integrate Mattersight's predictive behavioral routing (PBR) technology, for customer-agent matching, with its Nexidia interaction analytics to provide a holistic view of the customer journey and customer persona.

Mattersight capabilities will enhance CXone, Nice inContact's cloud customer experience platform, providing behavioral analytics for matching customers and agents in real time, Nice said (read related post, "NICE inContact CXone Going Strong").


Sangoma to Acquire Digium

UC provider Sangoma Technologies has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire all outstanding shares of Digium, creator of the popular open source communication software Asterisk, for $28 million. The deal, which comprises $24.3 million in cash and just shy of four million Sangoma common shares representing $3.7 million, is expected to close by the end of the month, subject to customary closing conditions.

The acquisition follows a long history of coopetition between Sangoma and Digium, said Bill Wignall, Sangoma president and CEO, in a prepared statement. The companies "have gotten to know each other very well over the years," and have an "excellent" strategic fit, he said.

The transaction is aimed at adding sales, increasing recurring revenue, and creating a market leadership in a time of industry consolidation, said Wignall, who assured Digium customers that Sangoma is committed to supporting the Digium products on which they rely. Further, Wignall stated Sangoma is committed to keeping Asterisk open source and will continue investment in its development.

This is Sangoma's seventh acquisition in seven years.

TNS Fights Back Against Robocalling

Transaction Network Services (TNS) this week announced availability of a neighbor spoofing feature that will enable wireless operators and landline providers using its Call Guardian robocall detection solution to protect callers from this increasingly popular robocall tactic.

With neighbor spoofing, information on the receiver's phone matches or closely matches the area code and a number of digits from his or her own phone number, regardless of where the call actually originates. The idea behind this approach is that receivers are more likely to pick up the call when they see a number they recognize and trust.

For the neighbor spoofing feature, TNS said it analyzes one billion call events daily across 500 telecom operators to identify information that can help consumers evaluate whether a phone call from a familiar area code is legitimate or not. If TNS determines a number isn't valid, the user will receive a notification not to answer.

"Neighbor spoofing is more than a nuisance," said Bill Versen, chief product officer at TNS, in a prepared statement. "If consumers stop answering calls from local numbers, they could miss an important call from a hospital, pharmacy, school, or loved one."

No Jitter editor Beth Schultz contributed to this article.

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