US firm acquires SA call centre business
18 January 2012
US-based Interactive Intelligence Group is to acquire some of the contact centre assets of its South African-based reseller, Atio, enabling it to set up a Johannesburg office serving the entire sub-Saharan African region.
The transaction sees a new company, Interactive Intelligence South Africa, being set up that will employ about 40 former Atio staff in serving nearly 40 Atio-Interactive Intelligence customers located throughout sub-Saharan Africa.
According to ITWeb, Interactive Intelligence, which offers an "all-in-one" contact centre platform, has agreed to pay R54-million in cash for Atio's assets.
The acquisition "lays a strong foundation for planned investments in the region that support our rapidly growing cloud-based communications-as-a-service business," Interactive Intelligence CEO Don Brown said in a statement on Friday.
The statement quoted Birgitta Cederstrom of consultancy Frost & Sullivan as saying that Africa was "increasingly popular as a preferred destination of contact centres ... South Africa specifically has been a natural choice for contact centres due to its large and articulate English-speaking population and service-oriented business culture.
"Another strength is its expanding broadband connectivity, thus ensuring that the latest unified communications and collaboration tools will run efficiently."
Brown said that Atio, which has been an Interactive Intelligence reseller since 2002, "has ranked among our top revenue-generating resellers of all partners throughout Europe, Middle East, and Africa each year since it first began offering our solutions.
"This successful track record, combined with a talented support and services team, mature infrastructure, and expertise in key industries such as financial services, telecommunications and government, makes Atio's Interactive Intelligence business an ideal acquisition choice."