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July 11, 2012

Xerox to Buy Customer Care Outfit WDS

By Paula Bernier, Executive Editor, TMC

When it comes to the customer experience, the mergers and acquisitions just keep coming. Xerox today revealed plans to expand its offerings related to customer experience management for the wireless industry with the acquisition of WDS. The U.K.-based outfit provides technical support, knowledge management and consulting to the world’s largest wireless service providers.

“WDS’s expertise in the telecommunications industry strengthens Xerox’s already broad portfolio of customer care solutions – differentiating us as a trusted partner for a rapidly evolving industry that requires reliable, accessible and scalable ways to support the complexity of their consumers’ needs,” says Chris Tranquill, president of the Xerox Telecommunications and Technology group.

A proprietary cloud-based platform called GlobalMine enables WDS to “capture, analyze and manage millions of technical support interactions across thousands of different mobile device types,” according to the companies. WDS leverages that information to help companies address in real time problems impacting the customer experience.

WDS has more than 2,000 employees in the United States, United Kingdom, South Africa, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand. That complements Xerox’s 48,000 call center employees, who deliver services for companies in 150 geographies and handles more than a million customer interactions daily via the phone and web.  

News of Xerox’s plans to buy WDS comes just a day after customer service solutions provider KANA Software Inc. announced it has acquired Sword Ciboodle, which also plays in this space, for an undisclosed sum. And it comes a week after Genesys revealed it has purchased LM Sistemas, an interactive voice response company from Brazil.

The growing interest in the customer experience space can be attributed largely to the rise of social media and the smartphone boom, which have put more control into the hands of consumers. That has shaken things up significantly at retailers and, indeed, at businesses of all stripes. As a result, organizations have become acutely aware they need to be vigilant about keeping tabs on what’s being said on social media – and that they need to formulate strategies on how best to respond. Businesses also are beginning to understand that it’s more important than ever to communicate with customers through the channels those individuals prefer. That has given rise to the multi-channel contact center. Organizations also are awakening to the need to better understand their current and potential customers, so they can build customer loyalty, avoid churn, and provide more competitive and profitable offerings.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2012, taking place Oct. 2-5, in Austin, TX. ITEXPO (News - Alert) offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. For more information on registering for ITEXPO click here.

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Edited by Brooke Neuman
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