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Microsoft Debuts Contact Center Platform, Contentsquare Closes $600M, More CX News

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Microsoft gets into the contact center ring, Webflow hires COO, Nextiva releases next-generation Workhub, Pecan debuts one-click model deployment, more CX news.

Microsoft has thrown its hat into the contact center ring. It announced the Microsoft Digital Contact Center Platform, which it calls "an open, extensible and collaborative contact center solution designed to deliver seamless customer journeys."

That seems great on the surface. But the real question these days is can the software help improve call center retention? That will be the differentiator, likely.

Microsoft thinks it has a winner. Its Digital Contact Center Platform tracks customers across voice, video and other digital engagement channels and is powered by Microsoft Dynamics 365, Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Power Platform and Nuance. It includes software for live customer engagements, collaborative agent experiences, business process automation, advanced telephony and fraud prevention capabilities.

"The addition of Nuance brings a new level of conversational AI, security and automation to the contact center," Charles Lamanna, corporate vice president, Business Applications and Platform for Microsoft, wrote in a blog post. "This gives both customers and agents tools to resolve issues faster and with more personalized service, thus reducing resolution times while improving customer satisfaction. It also enables contact centers to offer targeted incentives to build brand loyalty and upsell opportunities to boost revenue."

Microsoft is partnering with Accenture–Avanade, Avaya, Genesys, HCL, NICE and TTEC in its contact center rollout.

In other customer experience and digital marketing software news...

Contentsquare Closes $600M Growth Investment Round Led by Sixth Street 

Contentsquare, which provides digital experience analytics, announced it has closed a $600 million growth investment round, including $400 million in Series F equity and $200 million in debt financing, bringing total funding to $1.4 billion. The Series F investment is led by Sixth Street Growth, which joins new and existing investors Bpifrance, Canaan, Eurazeo, Highland Europe, KKR, LionTree, SoftBank Vision Fund 2 and funds and accounts managed by BlackRock. Many of Contentsquare’s other investors also participated in the round. The company’s valuation has doubled to $5.6 billion, according to company officials.

Contentsquare will try to grow organically and through M&A, company officials said. Contentsquare's software is designed to help customers understand customer experience on their websites and apps via its AI-powered engine.

“This new round of investment is a testament to the boundless ambition of our team, who is laser focused on helping businesses of all sizes deliver more human digital experiences — experiences that are seamless, frictionless, rewarding and inspiring,” Jonathan Cherki, CEO and founder of Contentsquare, said in a statement. “We’re excited to keep on dedicating ourselves to raising the standards of digital customer experience everywhere, and we feel this is just the beginning.”

Webflow Hires COO

Webflow, a visual development platform for building web presences, has announced the addition of Linda Tong as the company's chief operating officer. In this newly created role, Tong will lead all general and administrative functions, including people operations, finance, legal, IT, data and more.

This news follows Webflow's addition of Shane Murphy-Reuter as the company's first CMO in May. Webflow also announced a $120 million Series C funding round in March.

"Webflow's vision to build the most powerful visual development platform is a game changer in democratizing technology to allow more people to create for the web, and this is a mission I am personally committed to," Tong said in a statement. "Together with this incredible leadership team, I'm excited to add fuel to the fire with my experience scaling and transforming companies. It's invigorating to join Webflow during such a critical time of growth. There is a massive opportunity ahead and I'm honored to work alongside such a thoughtful and supportive team to further the company towards its mission." 

Learning Opportunities

Related Article: Medallia Acquires Mindful, Sitecore Launches Experience Manager Cloud, More CX News

Nextiva’s Releases Next-Generation Workhub

Nextiva unveiled a communications and productivity workhub. Nextiva’s new software enables individuals and teams to manage all conversations from a single place, boosting their productivity and customer engagement, according to company officials.

The application brings together team collaboration and customer communication in a single place. Company officials say the workhub will address common problems like application overload, siloed data and expensive clunky integrations.

It includes a Threaded Conversations feature, which brings together all interactions from voice, text, email and video meetings into a single view with contact management, productivity tools (file-sharing, notes on calls, calendars) and customer engagement tools (customer surveys, customer automation).

Freshworks Releases Summer ‘22 Product Suite

Freshworks' new Summer ‘22 Product Launch includes a collection of customer and employee engagement innovations.

Now available in Freshworks Summer '22 Product Launch, Freshchat™AI bot-assisted conversational messaging joins Freshmarketer™ and Freshsales™ on the Freshworks’ unified customer record architecture. It will aid productive interactions between customers and employees.

“The better you know your customers, the more you will delight them, and the faster they will come back for more,” Prakash Ramamurthy, chief product officer at Freshworks, said in a statement. “Conversational engagement is at the heart of customer interactions and Freshworks delivers a powerful data platform across sales, marketing and support so customers and employees can have smarter, faster conversations.”

Pecan AI Announces One-Click Data Science Model Deployment

Pecan AI, which provides AI-based predictive analytics for BI analysts and business teams, announced the addition of one-click model deployment and integration with common CRMs, marketing automation and other core business systems.

In addition, Pecan added live model monitoring to its automated predictive analytics platform. The platform now continuously monitors live models for signs of degradation related to factors such as internal changes in consumer behavior or external changes in data integrity.