Salesforce Adds Help Desk with Assistly Buy

By Ericka Chickowski  |  Print this article Print

Salesforce.com has acquired Assistly for $50 million, saying that it is "doubling down" on its Salesforce Service Cloud portfolio.

Salesforce.com leader Marc Benioff has announced that his company is "doubling down" on its Salesforce Service Cloud portfolio by spending $50 million to buy Assistly, an instant customer-service help desk built for the cloud.

"(It puts) us at the heart of the new trend of customer service help desk applications that have instant sign up and zero-touch onboarding, expanding the potential reach of the Service Cloud to millions of companies around the world," Benioff said.

Used by fast-growing firms like Spotify, Instagram and Square, Assistly's platforms gives user company employees the ability to log into a single interface to manage service cases and engage with customers across a number of different means of communications like Facebook, Twitter, web chats e-mail and even phone.  The interface enables user employees to filter cases, apply business rules and use the platform's workflows to make sure customer inquiries never fall through the cracks no matter what channel of communication they use.

"We started Assistly with the goal of bringing awesomely responsive customer support tools to the millions of small businesses struggling to serve customers in today’s social world," said Alex Bard, CEO of Assistly.

The purchase by Assistly follows a whirlwind romance between the two companies that developed into something more serious than just going steady. Just a month ago Salesforce and Assistly partnered to offer an integrated Assistly for Salesforce solution. Clearly the pairing went so well that it enticed Benioff and crew into bringing the solution completely in house.

Salesforce executives say that the purchase rounds out its Service Cloud customer service and support solutions by giving it more capabilities in the start-up market. Salesforce hopes to target the Assistly technology at a market that it numbers in the millions, small and emerging companies with fewer than 99 users. The company touts Assistly’s flexible pricing as the biggest draw, as the help desk firm currently allows its users to either pay by the hour in order to allow their employees from different teams to handle peak customer service loads or to upgrade users to full-time agents on a monthly flat-fee basis.

"We’re committed to making the Service Cloud number one for the smallest to the largest companies in the world," said Alex Dayon, executive vice president, applications, salesforce.com. "We are excited that with Assistly’s innovative technology and business model, the Service Cloud will now enable even the smallest companies to become a social enterprise."