ICR announces today that it has been acquired by Conn3ct which draws on over 30 years of knowledge and experience to solve complex communications challenges in three areas: Contact Centres, Unified Communications, and Network Services.
The acquisition serves as a key development in Conn3ct’s M&A strategy by adding important skills and intellectual property in automated conversational applications critical to delivering the ultimate customer experience.
Dramatic advances in technology and the introduction of artificial intelligence and machine learning have driven IVR from basic ‘call steering’ towards a more context-aware, personalised voice self- service customer experience.
Conn3ct had been looking for a partner to complement its skillset and offer a fully automated caller experience where complex queries can be quickly identified and routed to a live agent. Conn3ct identified ICR as the perfect partner.
"Conn3ct’s vision for contact centre IVR is quite simple: we want to move away from rigid, linear applications to something that is more human and satisfying to the customer’s experience. We want to distance ourselves from individual channel bots to a single conversation AI engine, that supports voice and chat channels. After careful consideration of the market players, we determined that ICR is not only a great strategic fit for Conn3ct’s future vision but can ensure that we are at the cutting-edge of IVR technology and, ultimately, the customer experience.”
Alex Tupman, CEO at Conn3ct
ICR adds important IP and capability to Conn3ct’s proposition. These include the ‘Decision Engine’, which adds historical and real-time context to the caller’s intent, captured using Natural Language, to correctly route calls to automated services or live agents and the ‘Data Services Layer’, which applies business-specific logic to drive intelligent user interactions.
Technology in development includes a tool to read in natural language content and export to a Google DialogFlow or Lex app for a combined chat/voice bot experience and the ability to blend on-premise IVR and Speech Recognition with cloud-based Speech AI - seamlessly.
Like Conn3ct, ICR is vendor agnostic. Its middleware allows differing technologies to integrate and work together seamlessly, offering Conn3ct the ability to integrate and provide solutions whether they are based on technology from Genesys, Avaya, Amazon, Google, Nuance, Aspect or any other.
Conn3ct sees the acquisition of ICR as creating value in the business over the longer term. The combination of ICR’s highly capable designers, developers and integration specialists; the processes they’ve created around delivering bespoke voice applications and the credibility of proven solutions to high profile enterprise consumer brands and global outsourcers of customer service operations are unique in marketplace.
Conn3ct’s customers have expressed demand for AI based automated conversational applications that are engaging and accurate; such customers need help to adapt, transition and transform legacy technologies and remove costs whilst significantly improving the customer experience.
Conn3ct is a vendor-agnostic communications partner that helps multi-site organisations across the world to solve their communications challenges by delivering simple solutions to complex problems. With over 30 years of knowledge and experience, Conn3ct offers a range of unified communications, contact centre and global network service solutions.
Conn3ct is backed by Apiary Capital, a leading UK mid-market private equity firm with extensive experience investing across the business and technology services sectors. Following the successful merger of Connect Managed Services and G3 Comms in 2019, ICR represents a compelling strategic acquisition in line with the ongoing acquisitive strategy supported by Apiary.
ICR is a leading supplier of conversational applications incorporating Voice Assistants, IVR, Speech Recognition, Voice Biometrics and messaging and has over 20 years trading experience.