Microsoft is to acquire Parature, a customer service software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider to complement its Dynamics CRM platform.
Financial terms were not disclosed, but sources say that the deal could be worth up to $100m (£60m).
Parature, which was first launched in 2000 under a different name, is based in Reston, Virginia and targets medium-sized and large organisations. It claims to have a total of 70 million users worldwide, with customers including IBM, Ask.com and the US Environmental Protection Agency.
Parature's products include a self-service knowledge base, mobile live chat, support ticketing, and social customer support.
One of its apps enables organisations to tap into what is being said about them on Facebook, Twitter and other social media web sites. Then, they can then respond to posts deemed negative.
Microsoft said that the company will be a good match for its CRM platform.
"These capabilities complement the existing Microsoft Dynamics CRM customer-care solution with core strengths in workflow, extensibility and process-driven user experiences that allow contact centre agents to do their best work," it said.
In a blog post, Bob Stutz, corporate vice president of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, said that the acquisition "marks a significant milestone in our mission to enable organisations to deliver amazing customer experiences".
"The addition of Parature's cloud service solutions not only strengthens the Microsoft Dynamics CRM offering, but also accelerates our efforts to deliver differentiated customer care capabilities," he added.
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