Nortel to acquire Clarify for $3.25 billion

Nortel has bet more than $A3 billion on the "second wave" of e-commerce in yesterday's acquisition of customer relationship management software supplier Clarify.

Nortel will pay $3.25 billion in shares to acquire Clarify, which makes front-office software for managing customer relationships.

Nortel said the deal would allow it to offer software that helps businesses build a single view of a customer's experience across sales, marketing and service, using data from a variety of sources including the telephone, faxes and the Web.

These capabilities will help businesses anticipate and respond to customer needs, personalise interactions and increase customer loyalty, according to Nortel.

The acquisition is due to be finalised early next year, local Clarify officials said.

Derek Sampson, Clarify's Asia-Pacific managing director, said the company would operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of Nortel.

The "second wave" of e-business was moving away from transaction-based processes and towards enterprises focusing more on the customer, Sampson said.

He said the Nortel acquisition would enable Clarify to double its local presence.

Clarify customers in Australia include Compaq, Microsoft, Nortel, Optus, GE Capital, Fujitsu, Hewlett-Packard and Ericsson.

Separately, Clarify reported third quarter revenues of approximately $62 million to $63 million. Revenues for the company's fiscal year 1998 were $130.5 million. The company has almost 800 employees in the Americas, Europe and Asia.

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