KUALA LUMPUR (BERNAMA) – Zoom Video Communications Inc has announced signing a definitive agreement to acquire Karlsruhe Information Technology Solutions – Kites GmbH (Kites), a start-up dedicated to developing real-time Machine Translation (MT) solutions. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
“We are continuously looking for new ways to deliver happiness to our users and improve meeting productivity, and MT solutions will be key in enhancing our platform for Zoom customers across the globe.
“With our aligned missions to make collaboration frictionless – regardless of language, geographic location, or other barriers – we are confident Kites’ impressive team will fit right in with Zoom,” Zoom Product and Engineering President Velchamy Sankarlingam said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Kites co-founders Dr Alex Waibel and Dr Sebastian Stüker said, “Kites emerged with the mission of breaking down language barriers and making seamless cross-language interaction a reality of everyday life, and we have long admired Zoom for its ability to easily connect people across the world.”
Kites, founded in 2015, has academic roots with Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, where the co-founders are also faculty members.
Kites’ talented team of 12 research scientists will help Zoom’s engineering team advance the field of MT to improve meeting productivity and efficiency by providing multi-language translation capabilities for Zoom users.
Dr Stüker and the rest of the Kites team will remain based in Karlsruhe, Germany, where Zoom looks forward to investing in growing the team. Zoom is exploring in opening an R&D centre in Germany in the future. Dr Waibel will become a Zoom Research Fellow, a role in which he will advise on Zoom’s MT research and development.