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French CRM Vendor Mounts U.S. Push

Kaidara debuts app that retains knowledge across an organization.
Kaidara Software Inc., a maker of customer-relationship management software for handling complex inquiries and problems, introduced new products this week as part of an effort to expand its U.S. customer base.

Kaidara, a Paris company that morphed from a consulting firm into a software vendor two years ago, is developing a niche in the area of complex product support, particularly in the IT, manufacturing, and automotive industries. Customers include PSA Peugeot Citroen, DaimlerChrysler, Freightliner, National Semiconductor and NEC.

The newly available Kaidara Advisor 2.0 is a CRM application that acts as a central knowledge repository and captures and retains expertise from across an organization, according to Kaidara. The upgraded software includes support for multiple languages, and the vendor recently customized a system to support customer inquiries in 23 languages for PSA Peugeot Citroen, which is using Kaidara to manage repair-service requests between car dealers and mechanics.

Advisor is designed to integrate with existing Web sites, contact-center applications, and E-mail and voice- response systems. "When it comes to supporting complex products, you need to be able to provide your customers with highly accurate answers," says Dominique Chatelin, Kaidara's president and chief operating officer. "We provide the accuracy and the quality of answers in a way that no other product does today." A new add-on for Advisor, called Kaidara Dialog, includes an internally developed natural-language processing engine that can interpret questions posed in the customer's choice of terms and generate clarifying questions to refine the customer's question or request, Kaidara says.

Kaidara recently opened an office in Los Altos, Calif., and employs 37 people worldwide. More than 60% of its business comes from European customers, with about 30% coming from the United States. Kaidara, which doesn't disclose revenue figures, raised $8 million in funding in April. Its products require customization, and pricing varies.