Cisco strikes a deal to buy customer interaction company IMImobile for $730M

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Cisco buys customer interaction platform provider IMImobile to create customer experience as-a-service offerings. (FierceWireless)

Cisco kicked off Monday with the news that it's buying London-based cloud communications software company IMImobile for $730 million, including debt.

Cisco said it was buying IMImobile to create "faster and smarter" customer engagement solutions for its enterprise customers. Cisco will leverage IMImobile's cloud communications software and services to create a customer experience as-a-service (CXaaS) offering to improve enterprises' customer experiences.

IMImobile provides software and services that enable enterprises and organizations to stay connected to their customers through interactive channels including social, messaging and voice. 

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"Together with IMImobile, Cisco will be able to provide an end-to-end customer interaction management solution, and the ability to drive faster and smarter interactions and orchestration through the customer's channel of choice," according to Monday's press release.

IMImobile's cloud software platform includes automation, orchestration, and monitoring features for client engagement across various devices. As more people work remotely or from home, enterprise customers are increasingly moving towards delivering contact center as-a-services (CCaaS), according to Cisco. IMImobile's software and services will be combined with Cisco's Webex Contact Center solution.

"A great customer relationship is built on consistently enjoyable interactions where every touchpoint on every channel is an opportunity for businesses to deliver rich, engaging and intuitive experiences," said Jeetu Patel, senior vice president and general manager of Cisco's security and applications business, in a statement. "We look forward to working with IMImobile to help create a comprehensive CXaaS solution for the market—one that gives businesses a platform to provide delightful experiences across the entire customer lifecycle journey."

The deal is slated to close in the first quarter of next year once it passes the customary approvals. Once the deal is completed, the IMImobile team will join Cisco's Contact Center business unit.

According to Crunchbase, IMImobile was founded in 1999 by Shyam Bhat and Vishwanath Alluri, and had 11 acquisitions under its belt. IMImobile’s cloud software platform manages over 42 billion messages and 44 billion commerce transactions a year across the world, according to Crunchbase.

IMImobile's customer roster includes Walgreens, BT, Best Buy, Centrica, O2 and Barclays. On its website, the company lists BT, Telia, Mavenir, Telefonica, and Salesforce as some of its partners.

"We are excited to join Cisco and become part of one of the world's leading technology companies as they seek to enable great customer experiences," said Jay Patel, IMImobile CEO. "We believe there will be a world of dynamic, always-on connections between global businesses and their customers and the combination of our respective technologies will enable to us make every interaction matter more for our clients."

While some vendors seek integrations with partners, Cisco has a long history of buying companies to build out its portfolio of services.

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