IBM: New social messaging solution driven by analytics

17 July 2015

IBM has rolled out new social messaging software, called IBM Verse, which allows for a new way of working. IBM Verse integrates email, calendars, file sharing, instant messaging, and social through the cloud and incorporates analytics to filter out the user’s important people and critical actions for the day.

IBM Verse
IBM Verse is a social messaging solution that incorporates email, calendaring and social sharing to give its users a fast way to communicate across different devices using the cloud. The solution infuses analytics and learns the user’s preferences and priorities over time. It will adapt to his/her way of working to provide instant context on people and teams and surface the user’s most important people and critical actions to focus on.

The key features of the solution include:

  • Faceted Search: To pinpoint and retrieve specific information across all the various types of content within email.
  • Team Analytics: To retrieve an organisational graph of the people on their thread and gain insights before responding.
  • Calendaring: An animated calendar to join meetings quickly.
  • File Sharing: A social file sharing capability to make co-editing, review and commenting on a file easy.

Commenting on the new solution, Jeff Schick, General Manager of Enterprise Social Solutions, says: “One of the few things that have changed with email over the past 30 years is the amount of messages being sent and received. Businesses are sending upwards of 108 billion emails a day and people just can’t keep up. Verse combines things like email, calendaring and file sharing with analytics to provide a system that learns who and what are most important to you.”



Grant Thornton advises on deal for high-growth cloud hosting firm

08 April 2019

Grant Thornton’s North West Corporate Finance team has completed its first TMT deal of 2019. The professional services firm advised the shareholders of Hosted Desktop UK on their investment from specialist SME lender Beechbrook Capital.

Technological disruption and changing consumer behaviour have continued to affect top Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT) players in recent years. The industry has seen revenues border on stagnation over the past decade, at 0.4% annual growth since 2008. While the industry is keen to develop new digital services and models to meet market challenges, they face a range of barriers – meaning the recruiting of talent specialising in innovative software and technology has become a key goal for the industry.

Amid this, Hosted Desktop UK (HDUK) provides cloud computing services to small and medium sized businesses across the UK. The firm’s cloud solutions provide businesses with IT reliability, flexibility, value for money and business continuity. As the firm bids to grow in the UK, with demand for its disruptive technologies high, HDUK has secured a key investment from specialist SME lender Beechbrook Capital.

Grant Thornton advises on deal for high-growth cloud hosting firm

The transaction was Beechbrook Capital’s maiden deal from its latest UK SME credit fund, which supports small and medium-sized businesses in the UK with EBITDA of £1 million and above. Manchester law firms Pannone Corporate (sell-side advice, led by Mark Winthorpe) and DWF LLP (buy-side advice, led by Jonathan Robinson) also advised on the deal, while Grant Thornton’s North West Corporate Finance team advised HDUK’s shareholders.

The deal represents the Grant Thornton branch’s first TMT deal of 2019, with a team comprised of Partner and Head of Corporate Finance Peter Terry, Manager Daniel Brecker and Assistant Manager Cariad Mudford advising HDUK shareholders on the investment. It is the third key deal in the TMT sector that the GT North team has advised on in the last 18 months, following the £16.5 million sale of Salford-based Sonassi to Iomart in December 2017 and NorthEdge Capital’s investment in Yorkshire company iPortalis in August 2018.

Grant Thornton’s Peter Terry said of the news, “As our domestic and working lives become ever-more technology dependent, it’s no surprise that there continues to be strong investor interest in any asset in the cloud computing, data infrastructure and connectivity space… We were pleased to work with Beechbrook Capital on the first deal in its new fund. It shows that despite the well-documented uncertainties in the economy there are still good funding options for dynamic SMEs and their management teams.”