As new or emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and machine learning prove to be beneficial in transforming the world, companies in the technology space have been trying to harness their potential.
Mostly, this endeavor has been caused by the need to stay relevant and ahead of the competition while improving customer experience and creating better products and services. In fact, most leading companies have resulted in the acquisition of promising AI-startups in a bid to benefit from the new technology.
Cisco, a foremost multinational technology company, has revealed that it recently agreed to buy Accompany in a transaction deal that will cost the company a staggering $270 million in cash.
Accompany is a well-known artificial intelligence (AI) startup that provides artificial intelligence-powered solutions that are focused on sales. By doing so, the startup allows other companies or its clients to manage their customer base/ portfolio in a better way through various ways including tracking sales histories, finding new prospects, strengthening relationships and navigating selling processes.
As a result of the acquisition, Amy Chang, Accompany’s chief executive officer, will become the head of Cisco’s collaboration portfolio. The collaboration group consists of WebEx and Spark, which are the two products being combined. Aside from the acquisition details, Cisco added that the current general manager of its collaboration group, Rowan Trollope, would leave on May 3, 2018, to join another company as the chief executive officer.
In response to the news regarding the acquisition, Accompany’s CEO and founder Amy Chang expressed her excitement for the wonderful opportunity to become part of Cisco and more importantly its collaboration team. She also added that integrating Cisco’s award-winning collaboration portfolio with Accompany’s relationship intelligence capacity would allow customers to intelligently work together with partners, other customers, and even employees.
Amy Chang, the former head of product for Google Ads measurement and a member of Cisco’s board of directors since 2016, will step down from her membership position at the board to take up a new role as the head of Cisco’s Collaboration Technology Group. According to Chuck Robbins, the chairperson and chief executive officer of Cisco, Army has continuously proven to be an innovative and effective leader throughout the years in different roles as an engineer, chief executive officer, and entrepreneur. As such, he was more than pleased to welcome her and the team from Accompany to Cisco.
Chuck Robbins culminated his remarks by saying that both Cisco’s and Accompany’s teams have an excellent opportunity to improve the machine learning and AI capacity based on Cisco’s collaboration portfolio. Together, they will continue developing better collaboration experiences for clients.
The recent move by Cisco to acquire Accompany is important since the AI-startup sounds more like sales automation and Salesforce than collaboration. The move was mostly driven by Cisco’s hope that Amy Chang can manage to put artificial intelligence (AI) at the heart of its collaboration systems or tools. In fact, her main objective will include adding both customer and user profile data to Webex meetings.