Elingo quietly liquidates, ships staff to rival Pivotal

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Karl Reed, who served as Elingo’s chief solutions officer, has moved to Pivotal Data.
Karl Reed, who served as Elingo’s chief solutions officer, has moved to Pivotal Data.

Johannesburg-based contact centre and IP telephony services provider Elingo quietly closed shop last month.

Now, the liquidated company’s employees and customers are being shipped to Pivotal Data, a local customer experience and contact centre solutions company.

Pivotal has nine business units that are involved in sectors such as data analytics, voice biometrics authentication, security, healthcare and mobility, among others.

In a statement, Pivotal says following the announcement that Johannesburg-based ICT company Elingo had entered voluntary liquidation on 27 February, Pivotal Data has confirmed it will provide employment opportunities to affected staff and will engage Elingo customers to ensure continuity of services to those directly impacted.

The company did not divulge the reasons for the liquidation and at the time of writing, the Elingo Web site showed it had been suspended, with an instruction to contact the hosting provider for more information.

Elingo focused on services and solutions within the multimedia contact centre and enterprise IP telephony space.

Its product offering was designed to automate each process within the call centre, including phone calls, SMS, e-mail, fax and Web chat.

Elingo was founded in 2001 by CEO Ian Goss-Ross. During its heyday in 2010, Elingo replaced Dimension Data as the South African and African reseller and support services provider for the US-based Interactive Intelligence IP communication suite.

Since 1998, the Interactive Intelligence contract was held by Dimension Data, which had partnered with Elingo since 2001 to deliver sales, installation and support services. Elingo formally took over from Dimension Data on 1 October 2010.

News of Elingo liquidation comes as the contact centre industry is facing pressure. Last year, pay-TV giant MultiChoice said it was culling over 2 000 jobs from its call centre, saying it was responding to customers who are “increasingly moving away from traditional voice calls and visits to walk-in centres and adopting new self-service and digital technologies to engage with the company”.

“Over the past few days, Pivotal Data has engaged with Elingo’s senior operational management to ensure service continuity to customers and re-home Elingo’s staff to provide continuity in their careers and retain the value they deliver to clients,” says Bruce Arnold, chief executive officer of Pivotal Data.

Both parties concluded an agreement whereby Pivotal Data will employ 13 Elingo staff members on a full-time basis.

However, they did not reveal the number of employees at Elingo before the liquidation.

Nonetheless, Jannie Pretorius, Elingo's former COO, and Karl Reed, who served as chief solutions officer, are part of the team and will assist in managing the transition.

According to Pivotal, these two highly-experienced ICT professionals joined the company at executive level effective from 1 March 2020.

“We would like to welcome all Elingo staff to Pivotal Data. Their inclusion in our rapidly growing business adds significant skills and experience to our already well-established technical, operational and executive teams,” says Arnold.

Pivotal Data is committed to ensuring continuity of services to all Elingo customers and will assume responsibility for the continued delivery of customer support once existing Elingo customers have agreed to the change, says the company.

“Given our efforts to retain Elingo’s core technical and operational staff, customers will keep their primary point of contact. As such, we expect that it will remain business as usual. We also envisage a structured and seamless service transition over time,” continues Arnold.

Pivotal says Elingo’s focus on contact centre and enterprise IP telephony services and solutions align synergistically with Pivotal Data's core enterprise communications offerings.

“We are confident that our broad ICT offering and our ability to integrate IT and communication solutions will unlock significant opportunities for both sets of customers following the integration of Elingo’s competence into Pivotal Data,” Arnold concludes.

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