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RingCentral Expands Customer Engagement Portfolio with Connect First

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RingCentral is buying Connect First, a cloud-based outbound/blended customer engagement platform for midsize and enterprise companies.

With the acquisition, the RingCentral customer engagement portfolio will include RingCentral Contact Center for inbound communications and workforce optimization, RingCentral Engage for digital customer engagement and Connect First for outbound/blended customer interactions.

RingCentral's Zane Long

RingCentral’s Zane Long

The terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close this quarter.

Zane Long, RingCentral’s senior vice president of global channel sales, tells Channel Partners the acquisition strengthens his company’s value proposition and further differentiates it from other solution-provider offerings in the market, “giving channel partners added benefit when they are thinking RingCentral first for their customers.”

“By adding to our customer-engagement portfolio, we’re enabling channel partners to look to RingCentral as the complete cloud solution for today’s modern digital workforce, both for UCaaS and for improving agent productivity and customer interactions in new ways,” he said.

RingCentral has built “significant trust” in the channel community with its UCaaS product, and it’s bringing an “innovative approach to customer engagement that goes beyond the traditional contact-center model,” Long said.

We recently compiled a list of 20 top UCaaS providers offering products and services via channel partners.

“As businesses today prioritize customer engagement, channel partners will increasingly be looking for cloud solutions that address these needs,” he said. “We’re focused on addressing the needs of businesses as they look to enable their mobile and distributed workforces to be more connected and productive.”

The Connect First cloud-native platform is built from the ground up on a microservices architecture that runs on Amazon Web Services (AWS). All of Connect First’s capabilities are available through web-based APIs.

“At Connect First, we’ve been focused on building an innovative outbound/blended customer engagement platform with a state-of-the-art architecture,” said Geoff Mina, Connect First’s founder and CEO. “This acquisition validates our technology leadership, and we’re confident that by joining forces with RingCentral we will broaden our market reach and scale to deploy our platform to enterprises worldwide.”

“As RingCentral continues to be chosen by larger businesses, the need to support outbound customer interactions and campaign management has increased,” said Sheila McGee-Smith, president of McGee-Smith Analytics, a research and consulting firm. “With its born-in-the-cloud microservices architecture, Connect First brings technology that has already been successfully deployed across midsize and enterprise organizations and will complement RingCentral’s existing portfolio.”


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