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Zendesk + Ultimate: Setting a new standard of service with AI agents

Acquisition positions Zendesk as the most complete AI offering for CX in the market.

Last updated March 13, 2024

Zendesk announced today that it will acquire Ultimate, an industry-leading provider of service automation, to deliver the most complete AI offering for customer experience (CX) in the market.

The latest CX Trends data shows that unprecedented demand for AI is driving up the speed and frequency of customer engagement. In this new era of AI-powered CX, AI agents can push beyond traditional bot capabilities to help brands transform service into a competitive advantage.

Together, Zendesk and Ultimate will offer companies the flexibility and control to resolve issues their way–be it fully autonomous AI agents, workflow automation, or human touch. For human agents, it means focusing more time on building relationships, resolving complex challenges, and applying front-line customer expertise to become strategic partners in the business.

“AI is the future of CX and the next generation of AI agents are not just a tool, but a necessary and fundamental shift in how businesses will engage with their customers,” said Tom Eggemeier, CEO of Zendesk. “With Ultimate, we will help our customers set a new standard, with AI agents giving customers the support they need quickly and effortlessly. This means human agents can focus on what they do best: building relationships, resolving complex challenges, and applying innovation and creativity to move businesses forward.”

“Our mission has always been to help businesses use AI to deliver joyful support experiences. We’ve seen 99 percent of CX organizations who adopt AI shift permanently to a hybrid human and AI agent approach,” said Reetu Kainulainen, CEO and co-founder of Ultimate. “As part of Zendesk, we now have the scale to drive this transformation for every business.”

Ultimate’s AI agents automate up to 80 percent of support requests. They leverage any knowledge source and offer full customization to resolve even the most sophisticated use cases. Its automation platform integrates with any backend system and provides robust analytics and reporting. By joining forces with Ultimate, Zendesk will offer AI agents with enhanced intelligence that are not just reactive, but proactive problem solvers, complementing human expertise.

“Traditional chatbots are great in meeting basic CX needs. AI agents can be smarter, more reliable and provide precision support,” said Daniel Newman, CEO of The Futurum Group. “With Ultimate, Zendesk is well positioned to offer AI agents that can tackle sophisticated and complex service use cases, helping resolve customer issues with personalization, speed and dynamic responsiveness.”

This acquisition builds on the launch of Zendesk AI, the fastest-adopted product in the company’s history. With Zendesk AI, Ultimate, and the company’s AI-powered Workforce Engagement Management solutions, Zendesk offers the only complete CX platform that elevates customer experiences, manages service quality, and accelerates business growth.

To learn more about Ultimate, visit ultimate.ai.

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