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Concerto-Aspect Follow-Up

July 5, 2005

Regarding the Concerto-Aspect merger announced today, a brief conversation with Mike Sheridan, Concerto VP of Strategy, and Brian Gentile, Aspect Sr. VP & Chief Marketing Officer, offered some supplementary information and insight:

Both companies have approached their products to market as reducing complexity. A key to this merger is to migrate customers to unified contact center capability. The companies, in easing complexity and integration between existing Aspect and Concerto products, further aim to enable the migration to VoIP whenever the companies' customers are ready, according to Sheridan.

The rationale behind this combination is to create a clear leadership position in solutions offering workforce management, unified contact center software and outbound dialing functionality. Both companies know their automatic call distributors (ACDs), so the merger is intended, as well, to create a leading position in multichannel ACDs, performance analytics and virtual contact centers.

"We are redefining the market's competition," Sheridan noted, "which we see as a very good thing."

The combination of the two major contact-center companies aims to expand global presence, as well, to meet greater market growth opportunities.

As for the hybrid of the companies, there are, as expected, going to be back-office and front-office redundancies, according to Sheridan. According to both spokesmen, the number of to-be-layed-off employees has not yet been decided.

As noted in the previous posting, Concerto CEO James D. Foy will be President and CEO of the new company. And Aspect CEO Gary Barnett will be joining the executive team, although his title and functioning position have yet to be determined, according to Gentile.

Both companies seem to be on top of their game, so the combination of the two could have huge effects on the contact center and customer service industries; it's simply a matter of how they strategically handle the merger transition.

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DRB



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