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Less than three months after announcing plans to acquire cloud contact center Five9 for a hefty $14.7 billion, Zoom today confirmed the deal is off.
Five9, a publicly traded company, failed to gain enough shareholder support to push the deal forward. But the decision also follows growing scrutiny from U.S. authorities that were looking into Zoom’s ties with China — where the company has a major R&D hub. Founder and CEO Eric Yuan was also born in China, although he is a long-time U.S. resident and citizen. Adding fuel to the fire, U.S House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last year referred to Zoom as a “Chinese entity.”
Zoom emerged as the default group video chat tool for millions of people globally during the pandemic, but it has also offered a cloud-based business phone system called Zoom Phone since 2019. At its annual Zoomtopia event last month, the company formally announced a cloud contact center product called Zoom Video Engagement Center, which it plans to launch in early 2022.
With a major player like Five9 under its wing, Zoom was hoping to go all in on the enterprise communication vertical to target the $11.5 billion cloud contact center market. Now that the deal is off, Zoom’s path forward in the contact center space might be a little rockier. But Yuan insisted the company is still committed to that trajectory and will continue its existing partnerships with the likes of Five9, Genesys, Talkdesk, and Twilio.
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“The contact center market remains a strategic priority for Zoom, and we are confident in our ability to capture its growth potential,” Yuan said in a press release. “We are building this new solution with the same scalability and trusted architecture that has made Zoom the platform of choice for businesses around the world.”
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