Lifesize merges with Serenova, eyes contact center-as-a-service market

The addition of Serenova to Lifesize will give the combined company more than 10,000 customers globally and a broad portfolio.

Lifesize is merging with Serenova, a contact center-as-a-service company, in a move that will take it well beyond its video conferencing and collaboration roots.

Terms of the deal weren't disclosed, but the addition of Serenova will give the combined company more than 10,000 customers globally. Serenova investor Marlin Equity Partners signed off on the deal and will invest in the combined company.

The combined company will be led by Lifesize founder and CEO Craig Malloy. The combined company will also offer an expanded joint portfolio throughout the year.

We caught up with Malloy to get an overview of the deal, which puts Lifesize into more competition with the likes of Twilio and Vonage. Serenova's cloud contact center is called CxEngage. Vonage rebrands as B2B communications service player, aims to close Twilio market cap gap

What does Serenova bring to the table and how does it combine with Lifesize?

Serenova has transformed the modern contact center by leveraging SaaS and cloud to allow businesses to deliver immediate, consistent and exceptional customer communication experiences across channels, from email to phone calls and from SMS text to social media.

Following the merger, we will build upon that to establish a broader platform for enterprise-grade, high-definition workplace collaboration and contact center communications that makes video core to customer and employee engagement. This combination is about creating more authentic connections between humans at every touchpoint across the enterprise, boosting productivity and responsiveness and ultimately helping globalized business happen in real time.

We are now uniquely positioned to help organizations deliver high-definition experiences –– beyond just pixels on a screen –– and drive deeper customer and team member engagement, from the contact center to the meeting room to the mobile workplace.

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Serenova data sheet

What's the future of Lifesize's hardware play/appliances, etc.?

Video conferencing solutions will continue to be an area of focus and differentiation for us because we believe that flexible workplaces will remain a key fixture in the future of work, as collaboration and distributed teams oscillate between traditional office environments and remote work.

Our customers can count on the fact that we have no plans to cease our relentless innovation nor dilute our market leadership in providing meeting room systems that enable vivid, high-definition communication experiences, including the first and only ones in true 4K.

More collaboration:

How will the combined company address a broad portfolio and more complicated go-to-market strategy?

The merger will allow the new company to deliver HD experiences to customers spanning a wide range of industry verticals. For example, retailers' contact center agents will be able to give direct instructions or visualize an issue a customer is having in clear detail over a crisp mobile video call. Healthcare providers will have the means to manage everything from telemedicine diagnoses to billing inquiries via one centralized video-capable platform. Education institutions will better support students with high-definition livestreams, group calls or face-to-face tutoring sessions.

Along with building out our executive team, Marlin Equity Partners brings significant experience and expertise in growing SaaS companies and platforms, which will have valuable influence on our go-to-market strategy. Together, Lifesize and Serenova will form the foundation for a UC platform that will add adjacent technologies, market segments and solve even more communications problems for customers through acquisition, partnerships and product development.

What will the scale of the combined company offer in terms of ROI, TCO, etc.?

Customers can expect our combined company to provide global scale, reliability and tailored localized support for businesses implementing our communication and collaboration solutions in more than 100 countries, through a strong cloud backbone and vibrant partner ecosystem.

Our combined platform will infuse video communication into Serenova customers' contact centers, lowering total cost of ownership as compared to the current landscape of patchwork UC solutions. But there is another key benefit that should not be overlooked: We fully expect customers and the market at large to uncover exciting new uses cases (as well as revenue streams and cost savings opportunities) for video that will deepen customer engagement, further enable agents to be more productive and help companies match their brand promise through the contact center.