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19th October 2000

Vocalis and HOPEWISER Sign Agreement to Jointly Develop Call Centre Solutions

Vocalis, the international speech technology group, and HOPEWISER, a provider of address management & consultancy solutions, announce today that they are to jointly develop their Call Centre Solutions portfolio.

The Agreement means that HOPEWISER will be able to offer speech recognition within their solutions, and Vocalis will be able to include the HOPEWISER address management suite of products in its Intelligent Query Engine (IQe) Call Centre Solutions portfolio. Both companies will jointly market the combined product portfolios.

"HOPEWISER are one of the major players in the address management market, and we are confident that this collaboration will enable us to jointly benefit from each others expertise, technologies and markets," comments Minesh Patel, Technical Director for Vocalis.

"HOPEWISER address management products deliver address accuracy, reliability and speed that will perfectly complement Vocalis IQe Call Centre solutions."

Andy Smart, Regional Sales Manager for HOPEWISER comments "The collaboration with Vocalis will enable us to stay at the leading edge of our industry, and continue to offer our clients the best possible address management solutions. We are very excited about the potential benefits of adding speech recognition to our solutions"

The Vocalis IQe is a suite of applications designed specifically for the Call Centre environment that can reduce the time a call centre agent spends with callers, offering the potential for huge productivity increases. The technology, which is developed by Vocalis and has a patent pending, asks the caller specific questions and using Advanced Speech Recognition (ASR) takes the callers responses and matches them against customer records. This enables the caller to be accurately identified before they are connected to an Agent. All relevant information about the caller can then be sent to the computer screen of the agent handling the call. Automation of this type of query has, to date, been impossible within the speech recognition industry. The accuracy levels achieved by Vocalis IQe can be higher than that achieved by human agents. The IQe-Postcode application, which requests the caller's postcode and street name, is the first application to be available on the IQe platform.

The IQe technology is based on Vocalis SpeechWare, the state of the art Advanced Speech Recognition (ASR) technology, offering both software and hardware based variants, enabling call centres to easily integrate ASR facilities into their existing services.

HOPEWISER were the first Royal Mail Value Added Reseller to provide address management software based around the 26 million addresses contained on the Postcode Address File (PAF®), and have since remained at the forefront of development within the industry. HOPEWISER clients include The Automobile Association, RAC, British Gas and BT.

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