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Contact center market consolidates with Genesys buy

Genesys is set to acquire Interactive Intelligence to expand its reach in the cloud contact center market. The deal raises questions around Genesys' reported bid for Avaya's call center business.

Contact center software provider Genesys is expected to boost its cloud-based services with its planned $1.4 billion acquisition of Interactive Intelligence, a vendor also known for its unified communications products. The deal, announced last week, would make Genesys a larger provider with much more expanded reach in the contact center market and serves as the latest example of UC consolidation.

The acquisition is a good move for Genesys since the two vendors have complementary product portfolios and little market overlap, according to Natalie Petouhoff, vice president and principal analyst at Constellation Research.

Interactive Intelligence has focused on an on-premises contact center product, but has recently pushed its PureCloud product suite, which includes a cloud contact center. The vendor also offers UC technology and niche products within the contact center space.

Genesys, on the other hand, is known in the contact center market for its omnichannel management tools, such as the Genesys CX Platform, which streamlines a customer's interactions with a company across multiple methods of contact. The provider also offers cloud options and focuses on integrating workforce optimization capabilities with its services, including automated workflow management and speech and text analytics.

Capitalizing on the cloud

Analyst Dave Michels offered a mixed perspective of the acquisition. He wrote in a blog that Interactive Intelligence is an innovator in the contact center market and was successfully reinventing itself as a cloud contact center provider.

Michels said Genesys has a lot to gain with the deal that should make the vendor a contact center market leader, particularly by leveraging PureCloud.

"That's the big prize," he wrote. "Large contact centers have clung to their [on-]premises-based systems, but that will change."

Genesys CEO Paul Segre said the combination of Genesys and Interactive Intelligence would provide broad customer experience services for organizations of all sizes. He said the company will invest across Interactive Intelligence's portfolio to support the momentum of its cloud contact center services.

The transaction is expected to close by the end of the year.

Genesys bid for Avaya contact center in question

The acquisition also raised questions around Genesys' reported bid for Avaya's contact center business.

Michels said the Interactive Intelligence acquisition is not good for Avaya since Genesys probably won't move forward with the bid. The acquisition could negatively affect Avaya's attempts to sell and force the vendor to spin off its contact center business with its own IPO, he said.

However, according to Petouhoff, if Genesys moves forward with its Avaya bid, it could create a behemoth contact center vendor due to Avaya's large global market penetration.

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