UCD spin-out ChangingWorlds Acquired by Amdocs for $60 million

Amdocs, the US-quoted technology company (NYSE: DOX), and the leading provider of customer experience systems has signed a definitive agreement to acquire ChangingWorlds Ltd, a spin-out company from UCD’s School of Computer Science and Informatics. ChangingWorlds is a provider of personalization and intelligent portal solutions for mobile service providers.

Under the terms of the agreement, Amdocs has agreed to acquire all of ChangingWorlds’ shares for $60 million in cash, net of cash on hand, subject to post-closing adjustments. Additional consideration may be paid later based on the achievement of certain performance metrics. The acquisition is subject to conditions customary to such transactions, and is expected to close during Amdocs’ fiscal quarter ending December 31, 2008.

ChangingWorlds’ technology, combined with the Amdocs CES portfolio, will enable better customer experiences by allowing end users to quickly get relevant information based on what they use most, making it easier to navigate the Internet on their phones and reducing the time they spend looking for content. ChangingWorlds’ technology currently addresses mobile devices, and Amdocs intends to expand the technology to three screens (mobile, PC and television) to personalize the customer experience across all touch points. ChangingWorlds and Amdocs share several customers including Sprint, the Vodafone Group and Telefonica O2.

ChangingWorlds was co-founded in 1999 by Professor Barry Smyth and Paul Cotter to commercialise their research into personalization and artificial intelligence technologies. ChangingWorlds maintains a strong strategic link with the University as its ongoing R&D activities are taking place in NovaUCD, the Innovation and Technology Transfer Centre at UCD.

Professor Barry Smyth, co-founder of ChangingWorlds and winner of the NovaUCD 2005 Innovation Award

“Personalization is a cornerstone of Amdocs’ strategy to offer Customer Experience Systems and ChangingWorlds is a recognized global expert in this area,” said Dov Baharav, chief executive officer of Amdocs Management Limited. “ChangingWorlds’ dynamic portal offerings surpass the traditional ‘one- size-fits- all’ approach, and no single vendor can match its range and sophistication of personalization services.”

ChangingWorlds’ patented technology automatically builds subscriber profiles based on user behaviour and usage patterns that require no user input or action to make finding relevant content faster and requiring less clicks. For example, a sports enthusiast will see the link to latest information about his favourite football team on his home page, while a classical music fan will see the link to the upcoming concerts in his area.

“Amdocs and ChangingWorlds recognise the power of the customer experience and the potential for service providers to further exploit their place in the digital value chain,” said David Moran, chief executive officer of ChangingWorlds. “Both Amdocs and ChangingWorlds will continue to aggressively execute on the shared vision of enabling service providers to offer the most compelling customer experience, to grow revenue from data services and retain customers.”

David Moran, CEO, ChangingWorlds

Welcoming the acquisition of ChangingWorlds, Professor Mark Keane, UCD’s Vice-President for Innovation said that, “The return to UCD from this acquisition will be re-invested in future UCD spin-out companies for the general good of the Irish economy.”

Dr Pat Frain, Director, NovaUCD speaking about the acquisition said, “The success of ChangingWorlds will be an inspiration for academic entrepreneurs who are interested in establishing new ventures to commercialise innovative ideas emerging from university research.” He added, “Such ventures are of critical importance, particularly in the present economic climate where there is an increasing need to generate opportunities for the creation of highly skilled employment.”


7 November 2008

About Amdocs
Amdocs is the market leader in customer experience systems innovation, enabling world-leading service providers to deliver an integrated, innovative and the intentional customer experienceTM - at every point of service. Amdocs provides solutions that deliver customer experience excellence, combining the software, service and expertise to help its customers execute their strategies and achieve service, operational and financial excellence. A global company with revenue of $3.16 billion in fiscal 2008, Amdocs has more than 17,000 employees and serves customers in more than 50 countries around the world. www.amdocs.com.

About Amdocs Customer Experience Systems (CES)
Amdocs CES is an integrated portfolio that delivers the operating environment service providers need to transform from providers of utility voice, data and video services into purveyors of the digital lifestyle. Amdocs CES allows providers to deliver an optimal customer experience—personalized, participatory and timely across any service, location and device. The Amdocs CES portfolio leverages Amdocs business process best practices based on real-world scenarios, and transcends traditional business support systems (BSS), operations support systems (OSS) and service delivery platforms (SDPs) to enable service providers to address both current and emerging customer experience business processes. Amdocs’ unique business model focuses on enabling its customers to create differentiation and build brand, loyalty, profitability and competitive leadership.

About ChangingWorlds
ChangingWorlds, the UCD spin-out company, is the global expert in the personalization of Mobile Internet data and the creation of in-depth subscriber intelligence for mobile operators. Since its inception, the company has championed and pioneered the need for the intelligent delivery of personalized content to ensure the success of the Mobile Internet and associated services. These efforts have proven successful and today more than 45 mobile operators worldwide have implemented the ClixSmart Personalization and Mobile Internet Platform solution.

ChangingWorlds has continued to blaze the trail for personalized mobile content discovery, delivering innovative personalization solutions for mobile portal navigation, mobile search, mobile advertising, and content recommendations both on and off- deck.

ChangingWorlds’ suite of personalization solutions provides targeting and personalization technology that accelerates content discovery and individualizes the user experience of the Mobile Internet. Results from implementations of the ClixSmart Personalization solution, for example, have shown a significant increase of Mobile Internet ARPU and a 30 percent increase in Mobile Internet traffic.

ChangingWorlds’ customer base worldwide includes Sprint, Vodafone Global, the O2 Group, T-mobile, TeliaSonera, CSL Hong Kong and Celcom Malaysia. 

About NovaUCD
NovaUCD, which officially opened in October 2003, is University College Dublin’s €11 million Innovation and Technology Transfer Centre. NovaUCD is responsible for the implementation of UCD policies relating to the commercialisation of intellectual property arising from UCD’s research programmes.

NovaUCD also provides entrepreneurs and knowledge-based start-up companies with incubation facilities and a comprehensive business support programme. NovaUCD is also the main point of contact for companies seeking partners for collaborative research and advice on licensing and other commercial opportunities.

Twenty-four companies, including ChangingWorlds’ Advanced Research Centre are currently located at NovaUCD. NovaUCD has been funded through a unique public-private partnership that includes AIB Bank, Arthur Cox, Deloitte, Enterprise Ireland, Ericsson, Goodbody Stockbrokers, UCD and Xilinx.