Menu
Microsoft buys Parature for customer self-service software

Microsoft buys Parature for customer self-service software

More details of Microsoft's plans for Parature will come at March's Convergence conference

Microsoft is rounding out its Dynamics CRM (customer relationship management) product by acquiring Parature, maker of cloud-based software companies can use to create self-service portals for customers.

Terms of the deal, which is expected to close within 30 days, were not disclosed. Parature's roughly 100 employees will be brought into Microsoft, said Fred Studer, general manager of Dynamics product marketing.

Microsoft had already partnered with Parature but decided it was time to acquire the company, in the belief that self-service is becoming a preferred way for customers to get help with products and services, according to Studer. "We think most customers would prefer self-service than calling an old-school call center and talking to a customer service agent," he said.

Parature's software, which also includes a recently upgraded knowledge base, can be reskinned to match a company's logos and design schemes. Customers include Ask.com, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and IBM and Parature's software serves 70 million users, according to Microsoft.

More details of how Parature will fit into Dynamics will be disclosed soon, Studer said.

The acquisition follows Microsoft's purchases of marketing software vendor MarketingPilot and social media monitoring provider Netbreeze. All three deals reflect Microsoft's effort to create a set of CRM-related technologies that cover scenarios from making an initial sale to servicing customers post-purchase and sparking repeat business. SAP, Oracle and Salesforce.com are pursuing similar strategies.

Buying Parature "fills in a key gap" for Dynamics CRM, analyst Ray Wang of Constellation Research wrote in a blog post: "Microsoft CRM currently has a customer care offering that delivers core customer service with case management, universal queuing and routing, and light scheduling and field service. Parature provides key self-service knowledge base software, core customer service, live chat, mobile access, survey and feedback capabilities, social monitoring, and Facebook portal capabilities to the Microsoft service offering."

The knowledge base is Parature's "crown jewel" and "one of the most modern in the industry," Wang added.

CRM is the fastest-growing member of the Dynamics family, which includes several ERP (enterprise resource planning) applications as well, but buying Parature was a smart move, according to Wang.

"In head-to-head deals, the Dynamics CRM unit is giving Salesforce.com the most competition," he wrote. "The acquisition of Parature shows that Microsoft is willing to make strategic bets to accelerate time to market of key offerings such as customer care. Parature accelerates Microsoft's efforts in customer care by 24 months."

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags ParatureInternet-based applications and servicesCustomer Relationship ManagementapplicationsMicrosoftSalesforce.comSAPsoftwareinternetOraclePortals

Featured

Slideshows

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel

​As the channel changes and industry voices deepen, the need for clarity and insight heightens. Market misconceptions talk of an “under pressure” distribution space, with competitors in that fateful “race for relevance” across New Zealand. Amidst the cliched assumptions however, distribution is once again showing its strength, as a force to be listened to, rather than questioned. Traditionally, the role was born out of a need for vendors and resellers to find one another, acting as a bridge between the testing lab and the marketplace. Yet despite new technologies and business approaches shaking the channel to its very core, distributors remain tied to the epicentre - providing the voice of reason amidst a seismic industry shift. In looking across both sides of the vendor and partner fences, the middle concept of the three-tier chain remains centrally placed to understand the metrics of two differing worlds, as the continual pulse checkers of the local channel. This exclusive Reseller News Roundtable, in association with Dicker Data and rhipe, examined the pivotal role of distribution in understanding the health of the channel, educating from the epicentre as the market transforms at a rapid rate.

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel
Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017

Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017

After Hours made a welcome return to the channel social calendar last night, with a bumper crowd of distributors, vendors and resellers descending on The Jefferson in Auckland to kickstart 2017. Photos by Maria Stefina.

Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017
Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel

Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel

Arrow Electronics introduced Tenable Network Security to local resellers in Sydney last week, officially launching the distributor's latest security partnership across Australia and New Zealand. Representing the first direct distribution agreement locally for Tenable specifically, the deal sees Arrow deliver security solutions directly to mid-market and enterprise channel partners on both sides of the Tasman.

Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel
Show Comments