Nuance Communications (Nasdaq: NUAN), a company that is not new to the mergers and acquisitions game, is making yet another purchase. Nuance announced this week that it is acquiring Loquendo, a unit of Telecom Italia (NYSE: TI) that, like Nuance, focuses on speech recognition and related technologies. The Italian telco said the deal is worth more than $75 million.
The deal will help Nuance, based in Burlington, Mass., gain more traction in Europe and Latin America for its products, including speech-to-text and text-to-speech solutions for a variety of applications. Speech recognition and conversion technologies have become increasingly popular in recent years, getting deployed as part of customer service IVR systems, in-car communications systems, mobile phones, VoIP services, unified communications platforms and more.
Nuance also recently acquired voice technology company SVOX and document management firm Equitrac to broaden its product portfolios. Other acquisitions the company has made include the late 2009 purchase of speech-to-text firm SpinVox and a 2008 deal that brought in online self-service customer care company SnapIn.
Nuance does not always take a hands-off approach to managing the companies it absorbs. For example, after it acquired SpinVox, Nuance closed down the British firm's consumer-focused voice operations to work more closely with SpinVox's carrier partners, which included several U.S. mobile carriers.
- see this Boston Globe post
Nuance acquired Spinvox in late 2009
Nuance bought SnapIn in 2008
Nuance bought some patents from IBM in 2009