Blocks with Eye

by Natalie Miller • @natalieatWIS

Zain Kuwait enhances customer engagements with social software

Published June 13, 2014


A mobile telecommunications company in Kuwait wanted to increase the engagement and involvement of its customer base; get feedback on new offerings, promotions, and services; and quickly listen to customer issues.

To achieve this deeper, more personalized experience for its 2.5 million customers in Kuwait, Zain turned to IBM’s social software. The IBM solution brings together Zain’s digital, mobile, and social platforms to offer customers a single point of engagement.

The IBM Customer Experience Suite framework allows Zain to streamline the current services that it used to deliver through multi-channels—services such as promotions, accounts, and a calling center—and provide them all through one entry point for the customer, says Mohamed Emad El-Din, IBM Collaboration Solution Business Unit Executive, Software Group, IBM Middle East & Africa.

The new offering is delivered through IBM's new ExperienceOne portfolio, a new integrated portfolio of cloud-based and on-premise offerings that help clients quickly deliver deeper, more valuable customer engagements by bringing together marketing, sales, and service practices.

Hosted by IBM on-premise at Zain, the platform also includes a content management component that allows Zain’s marketing team to edit content without going back to the IT department, as well as user preference detection for adjusting the language and other customer adjustments. Other capabilities, explains Emad El-Din, include social and security modules.

Company At a Glance >>


  • Company Name: Zain
  • Headquarters: Kuwait
  • Industry: Mobile telecommunications
  • Employees: Over 6,000
  • Founded: 1983
  • Website:

Company Details: Zain, formerly Zain Group, is a a pioneer in mobile telecommunications and has commercial presence in eight countries across the Middle East and North Africa. As of March 2014, Zain has about 46.2 million customers. Kuwait Zain's flagship operation and in 1994 became the first telecom operator to launch commercial GSM services in the region and now offers 4G LTE.

IBM solutions: IBM Customer Experience Suite
IBM ExperienceOne portfolio

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Founded in 1983 as Kuwait’s first mobile operator, Zain is a pioneer in the telecommunications industry, employing a workforce of more than 6,600 professionals servicing more than 46.2 million active customers in eight Middle Eastern and African countries, according to IBM.

Kuwait's mobile penetration rate has reached 215 percent, according to Business Monitor International. Emad El-Din added that Zain wanted to differentiate itself in the highly competitive and growing telecommunications market in Kuwait with more personalized offerings and deeper customer engagements.

“With the number of mobile devices and social media tools on the rise, it is crucial that Zain has the right channels in place to reach our customers with the best personalized content and services wherever they may be,” says Omar Al Omar, Chief Executive Officer, Zain Kuwait, in a press release. “Leveraging IBM’s solution capabilities, we will be able to gain deeper insights about our customers’ behavior which will help us in our customer engagement and services personalization.”

We are advising our customers to listen to their customers … to be able to respond the way that their customers are expecting them to respond.

Mohamed Emad El-Din, IBM Collaboration Solution Business Unit Executive, Software Group, IBM Middle East & Africa

In IBM’s recent survey of 1,600 CIOs worldwide, more than 80 percent of respondents said they are shifting their focus to the front office, where marketing, sales, and service managers work directly with customers. To do so, they are investing in new technologies to gain deeper insights into customer data. Examples of these items include sentiment mining and social network analysis to identify unique behavioral patterns and reliably predict critical trends. This deeper engagement is a now universal ambition, with 90 percent of all C-suite leaders expecting to increase direct collaboration with their customers.

“There is no longer any real distinction between the customer experience and contemporary business strategy, as customer satisfaction is key to the success of every organization,” says Amr Refaat, IBM General Manager for Middle East and Pakistan. “Zain has long been at the forefront of technology adoption in Kuwait. With IBM’s solution, Zain will be able to revisit its existing digital platforms to create enhanced exceptional digital experiences that reach and engage with their customers.”

According to IBM, the IBM Customer Experience Suite helps organizations develop a dynamic web experience for consumers that can attract and retain customers, personalize advertising and marketing campaigns, and enhance overall customer loyalty. For Zain, the solution is being implemented in partnership with IBM business partner Khorafi Business Machines. IBM is hosting the software for Zain—both browser-based and through customer mobile devices.

IBM can recognize the mobile device being used by the customer and adjust the experience to fit with that device, explains Emad El-Din.

“IBM in general is doing a lot of … engagement in the area of exceptional user experience,” explains Emad El-Din. “We believe that we need to do and use what our customers are doing and using. So we believe now that many customers are more familiar with push [technology], are more familiar with online checking, are more familiar with doing things online than doing things the old-fashioned way. We are advising our customers to listen to their customers … to be able to respond the way that their customers are expecting them to respond.”

Find out more information about IBM Customer Experience Suite and IBM ExperienceOne portfolio.



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