Alcatel subsidiary Genesys Laboratories has signed a global agreement to acquire IBM's CallPath assets to co-develop business intelligence solutions for customer contact centres and the enterprise.
IBM's CallPath is a computer telephony software solution that integrates voice and data communications in call centres. It is part of IBM's Voice Systems unit.
Under the acquisition, 53 IBM CallPath development engineers in North Carolina will relocate to Genesys in the US.
Genesys says the move will help the company grow its US R&D operations and work more closely with IBM.
"This is also a huge opportunity for Australia to draw on this huge pool of our R&D strengths," said Genesys Australiasia managing director James Brooks.
Genesys said in a statement on Tuesday that it will continue to service and support CallPath's 400 global customers, while IBM will remain the first point of contact for service under existing contracts. Those Australian clients include Westpac, ANZ Bank and St George Bank.
The companies will also extend their worldwide relationship - formed in August 2000 between Genesys and IBM GSA - to produce a joint solutions "blueprint" for customer contact centres.
The blueprint provides an architecture for the companies to design contact centre solutions using IBM products for "unassisted service" and Genesys products for "assisted services".
Specifically, the companies will use Genesys' Universal Queuing Routing, Internet Contact Centre and Outbound solutions with IBM's DirectTalk, Websphere Voice Server and WebSphere Application Server, which builds on an existing product integration between Genesys and IBM's DirectTalk platforms.
Australian companies using Genesys technology include the Australian Taxation Office, Vodafone and Hutchison-Orange Communications.
Brooks said the vendor partnered with IBM to provide customers with complete e-business solutions in the contact centre space.
He added that IBM's WebSphere line would play an important part in the alliance, allowing Genesys to package it with its own applications to deliver joint solutions for contact centres.
"We're looking at making intelligent use of business rules technology to build new multimedia contact centre solutions," he said.
Brooks declined to disclose the value of the deal, saying the agreement was commercial in confidence.