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Roundup: CX Mergers and Acquisitions, Funding Activity in September

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The biggest CX acquisition in September was the $12 billion purchase made by financial software giant Intuit of email and marketing services firm Mailchimp (read that story here), with the deal expected to close sometime in 2022. Another prominent acquisition during the month was that made by Zendesk, the California-based customer service software and support ticketing systems firm, of Portuguese artificial intelligence (AI) platform firm Cleverly (that story found here). Aside from those two headliners, however, were a few other notable mergers and acquisitions (M&A) events, all taking place or announced in September, as described below.

On September 2, California-based Sitecore, the provider of digital experience management software, announced the acquisition of Reflektion, an AI-powered digital search platform. The combination enables engagement with shoppers and empowers them to make purchase decisions more quickly.

On September 4, Clootrack, the Virginia-based enterprise-level smart CX analytics platform, raised $4.0 million in a Series A round led by Inventus Capital, pushing its total funding from external investors to $4.6 million. The fresh funds will be earmarked for product development and market expansion into the US. Leveraging AI, Clootrack analyzes scores of customer reviews to help businesses resolve customer issues more quickly.

On September 8, Zeotap, the customer intelligence platform headquartered in Berlin, Germany, that helps brands better understand their customers and predict behaviors, announced an $11 million extension to its Series C round. The extension follows the $42 million raised by the company in July 2020 and by an initial extension of $18.5 million in November from SignalFire’s Breakout Fund. This new extension takes place to enable new investors, such as Liberty Global Ventures, to come on board, following oversubscription in previous rounds. The new round brings the company’s total raised funding to $90 million.

Also on September 8, Massachusetts-based software as a service (SaaS) company Acquia announced it had agreed to acquire Widen, the cloud-native maker of digital asset management (DAM) and product information management (PIM) software headquartered in Wisconsin. Widen unites digital assets like rich media, product information, and marketing copy in a single workflow, using an intuitive interface to allow marketers to access all of a brand’s resources. The transaction is expected to close in late September 2021, subject to completion of all necessary regulatory approvals and satisfaction of all closing conditions under the definitive agreement.

On September 9, Utah-based enterprise-level CX management platform InMoment announced it had completed the acquisition of Lexalytics, the provider of cloud and on-premise natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning (ML) services that transform structured data and text, as well as unstructured data from any source into actionable intelligence. Together, the companies hope to bring flexibility to organizations that require text analytics infrastructure in private, public, or hybrid clouds.

On September 14, Nextiva, the Arizona-based voice-over-internet protocol (VoIP) company, announced it had raised $200 million in its first external funding round from Goldman Sachs Asset Management, at a valuation of $2.7 billion. The funding will be used to accelerate Nextiva’s vision, which is to help businesses and teams build stronger relationships with their customers. The company plans to accelerate innovation for connected communications, including AI and automation development, build out new routes to market, and advance global expansion. Nextiva’s funding and valuation reflect a shift in the market to move away from point solutions and siloed applications toward more tightly integrated tools and workflows that keep customer communication and engagement at the core.

Also on September 14, UK firm Glassbox, a provider of digital experience analytics for web and mobile applications, announced its acquisition of A/B testing technology from UK-based Convertize, a specialist in A/B testing software. The acquisition extends the capability of Glassbox to help businesses improve speed and quality of digital product development cycles.  

On September 15, Dialpad, the California-based creator of an AI-powered communication and collaboration platform, announced its acquisition of UK firm Kare Knowledgeware, a CX platform that optimizes workflow orchestration, knowledge management, analytics, and business intelligence. The acquisition and integration of Kare Knowledgeware into Dialpad contact centers broadens the application of AI and NLP throughout the Dialpad platform to enable conversational AI and elevate both the customer and agent experience.

The same day on September 15, Saudi Arabian-based customer engagement platform Unifonic announced its $125 million Series B funding round, led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2 and Sanabil Investments. Unifonic solutions integrate customer communication channels, including text, voice, messaging, and web, into a single platform, enabling companies to create stronger customer relationships. On September 20, Irish-based SaaS firm Accenture announced its intent to acquire Experity, a leading provider of cloud-based CX and commerce solutions in Brazil. Experity helps businesses build greater efficiencies and agility in commerce, marketing, content, and data through leading cloud-based technologies. The Experity team of approximately 420 will join Accenture Interactive in Brazil, bringing scale and strengthening capabilities to deliver cloud-based CX solutions for companies in segments like consumer goods and natural resources.

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