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PHOTO: Mark Jenkins paradise

Microsoft debuted commerce solutions for its Dynamics 365 suite to “transform the retail experience.” Microsoft introduced the solutions — Dynamics 365 Commerce and Dynamics 365 Connected Store — to press and analysts last week in San Francisco. The Dynamics 365 suite includes CRM and ERP applications. 

Microsoft officials said in a press release the Dynamics 365 Commerce application is an omnichannel solution for retail that “unifies back office, in-store, call center and digital experiences.” It includes collaboration and productivity solutions that are designed to aid retail employees with customer service and will also leverage intelligent systems to provide insights for decision-making and personalization.

The Dynamics 365 Connected Store solution is designed to help retailers better connect customer experiences in the physical and digital worlds. The new application will analyze data from video cameras and Internet of Things (IoT) sensors to provide real-time and predictive insights. It provides retailers with data from observations of in-store visitors and can detect potential issues such as the need for extra cashiers based on sensor or camera data and fluctuations in the condition of store equipment through Azure IoT Central.

In other customer experience software news …

Arm Treasure Data Updates CDP Platform

Arm Treasure Data, a customer data platform (CDP) provider, released a solutions library of prebuilt sets of code and applications (called Treasure Boxes) and a new solution that provides artificial intelligence/machine learning-based analytics on data (called Custom Scripts).

According to company officials, the Treasure Boxes library applies about a decade of data learnings with a combination of code snippets, entire components and visualizations. They cited examples of next best action recommendations based on customers’ social media scores, predicting energy consumption, tracking sales or churn and analyzing online advertising campaigns. Custom Scripts, meanwhile, allows all data pipelines to be leveraged on the CDP platform. 

Cheetah Digital Debuts Customer Engagement Suite

Cheetah Digital, a cross-channel customer engagement solution provider, has announced the debut of its Customer Engagement Suite. The Customer Engagement Suite helps marketers deliver messaging and experiences off the company's foundational data layer, the Cheetah Engagement Data Platform. Officials say it combines a data platform with real-time, cross-channel execution capabilities. It also includes loyalty programs. 

Users can also secure permissions to execute cross-channel marketing campaigns. The Cheetah Engagement Data Platform provides profile unification, segmentation and machine learning-driven insights. 

Solodev DCX Introduces Managed Kubernetes Service

Solodev DCX, a digital customer experience platform built for Amazon Web Services, launched Solodev DCX Enterprise Edition for Kubernetes, the open-source system for automating deployment of containerized applications. The new Solodev product is now available for purchase in the AWS Marketplace as a self-service solution.

Solodev recently launched the Solodev Elastic Container Service (ECS) for Docker in the AWS Container Marketplace. The move to Kubernetes will allow users to deploy a fully containerized CMS and customer experience platform via AWS CloudFormation.

Company officials said that this will enable distributed microservices to run across environments regardless of operating systems. Kubernetes removes underlying infrastructure limitations and bundles things like file systems, memory and other dependencies.

Medallia Acquires Zingle for $42 Million

Medallia, a customer experience management provider, acquired Zingle for $42 million. Zingle is a real-time mobile messaging solution designed to increase customer engagement with a specific focus on the hospitality, travel and retail industries. In a press release, Medallia officials lauded the Zingle platform’s ability to leverage AI to distribute service requests and personalize offers.

RedPoint Announces $13.5 Million Equity

RedPoint Global, a CDP provider, announced an equity raise of $13.5 million. The money will help fuel continued geographic expansion and deepen strategic partnerships, according to company officials. The funding round was led by Camden Partners, and the round includes participation of existing and new investors.

The company was founded in 2006 with a focus on solving customer engagement challenges. This week's funding round was the first since a $12 million cash infusion in 2016. The company was an early entrant in the CDP market, and a founding sponsor of the CDP Institute.