IBM Watson Campaign Automation becomes ACOUSTIC

Johannesburg, 29 Jul 2019
Read time 3min 00sec

IBM has decided to release its Watson Customer Experience (WCE) Software Division in order to focus more tightly on technology infrastructure and associated services.

Specifically, as of 15 July 2019, IBM has unbundled the IBM WCA business, including people, systems, software, deployment environments, contracts, partners and other assets, into a new entity called ACOUSTIC.

Acoustic is headed by CEO Mark Simpson, WCE's former head. The new company comprises well over 1 000 employees and will continue to focus on building and delivering technology solutions to marketers. ACOUSTIC’s customer base comprises more than 3 000 enterprises around the world.

What does this mean for Grapevine and its clients?

Grapevine views this as an important positive development in terms of the future of the IBM WCA cloud.

Grapevine has been enabling its clients to run on this cloud successfully for over 10 years and has teams dedicated to on-boarding, integrations, automations, campaign execution and more, which are 100% oriented towards this solution set.

Grapevine services and support will continue, in accordance with current order and terms, and will be delivered on by ACOUSTIC (and Grapevine as applicable), both now and in the future, for all its clients.


The primary benefit for Grapevine and its clients is focus. ACOUSTIC is fully funded and committed to further significant R&D spend into product development, in order to serve the marketer more completely on the digitalisation voyage.

As a pure-play martech offering from a company with large scale and installed base, Grapevine sees it as having the best of both worlds. Secondly, Grapevine benefits from much more direct access into the support, technology, commercial and professional services functions of ACOUSTIC, which is significantly less complex as an organisation than IBM.

What lies ahead

“As Grapevine, we will be making an even stronger commitment to ACOUSTIC in the year ahead. We believe that this martech enterprise cloud platform is still the best for our clients who are on the journey towards integrated data-driven omnichannel marketing at scale, and that the technology will get even better as a result of this unbundling,” says Nick Orton, CEO of Grapevine.

“We reassure our clients that Grapevine will continue to grow its own teams around client success and technology support, and will continue to enable clients with integrations, automations, omnichannel delivery, and assist with implementing strategies for cart abandonment, welcome, lead-scoring, behavioral analytics, geofencing/tagging and other engagement functionalities as before,” he concludes.

In summary:

a. The new ACOUSTIC is staffed by the IBM teams from the IBM WCA division.

b. Grapevine’s clients’ investments are safe as ACOUSTIC has substantial size, financial security and client scale, and is driven to deliver world-class marketing technology only.

c. As the main partner in the region, Grapevine is fully committed to delivering ACOUSTIC marketing technology and cloud services to and for its clients.

d. Grapevine’s clients are protected under current agreements and the terms continue uninterrupted, ie, clients continue to contract with Grapevine as before.

e. As the transition unfolds at IBM/ACOUSTIC, Grapevine will keep its clients up to date. Grapevine clients can expect to start seeing ACOUSTIC branding soon, as well as the UI of the campaign front-ends to be updated to reflect ACOUSTIC.

Editorial contacts
Grapevine Group San-Marie Smith (+27) 21 702 3333
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