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Symbol Picks Up ImageWare

By Thor Olavsrud     Feedback

Symbol looks to ImageWare's CRM and Mass-Customization software to give it an end-to-end solution set for mobile in-store CRM.

Looking to enhance the in-store customer shopping solutions of its mobile commerce initiative, Holtsville, NY-based Symbol Technologies Thursday acquired ImageWare Technologies' software and assets.

The two companies did not disclose the terms of the deal.

Symbol specializes in the use of handheld computers and wireless data and voice networks to scan bar codes on the retail floor (and for logistics and transportation companies).

The acquisition forwards Symbol's ambition to offer an end-to-end in-store CRM solution which promises what Symbol refers to as "client anywhere -- data anywhere and everywhere." The plan calls for Symbol to integrate ImageWare's software with its computing, wireless local area networking and bar code scanning product set.

The deal brings Symbol ImageWare's one-to-one Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Mass-Customization software for the retail marketplace, including its ImageMate, ImageWorks Enterprise, eSP and MyClientBook applications.

It will integrate the software with its mobile Point of Sale (POS), product locator, mobile voice over IP, and integrated mobile payment solutions. In addition, it plans to use ImageWare's embedded .NET/XML/SOAP integration layer to help its own technologies co-exist and share data with both new and legacy enterprise solutions like third-party POS, data marts and warehouses, merchandising and centralized CRM/Campaign Management systems.

Together Symbol said its technologies and ImageWare's applications will give retailers the ability to coordinate sales activity, update client profiles, review purchase history, check sizes and measurement, track preferences and wish list items, make suggestions, track shopping frequency, plan follow-up calls, schedule appointments, and send out-bound correspondence -- all from a Symbol handheld. The software will also give users access to purchase and client information, as well as sales force automation tools and support for ad hoc queries and reporting on collected data.

Symbol is also looking for opportunities on the OEM front.

Bryan Amaral, ImageWare's founder and chief executive officer will join Symbol as vice president of clienteling and personalization solutions for Symbol's Retail-Mobile Commerce Division.

This article was originally published on February 27, 2003
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