There is nothing earth-shattering in this announcement— just common-sense enhancements according to user requirements. Still, there is at least some psychological importance in Aptean showing initiative and taking the first concrete product roadmap steps post CDC Software–Consona Corporation merger. Read the rest of this entry »
Accuride Corporation selects cloud-based Plex Online ERP
Industry tags: Manufacturing
“This Indiana-based automotive components manufacturer and supplier has performed a significant multi-year ERP software evaluation and selection project, resulting in the selection of the cloud-based ERP system from Plex Systems. A single application is to replace seven separate ERP systems, or over different 200 applications, that are running in the head office as well as its subsidiary manufacturing facilities. This implementation is important for Accuride, as it simplifies its IT structure.”—Aleksey Osintsev, TEC Analyst
Jordan’s Furniture retailer selects Coda Financials as its financial management solution
Industry tags: Wholesale and retail trade
“This famous and venerable (over 80 years old) furniture retailer with multiple locations across New England uses a 20-year-old ERP system, and realized that its financial module does not meet the needs of the current business, and costs too much, as well as being operable in constant patching mode only. Therefore they decided to have a look at the market in order to choose another application with a focus on budgeting, planning, real-time tracking, and flexible reporting. Coda Financials was the choice of this thorough selection, and besides the functional capability of the software, ease of collaboration with the Coda team was also an important factor.”—Aleksey Osintsev, TEC Analyst
In the deluge of news revolving mainly around the Big Five product lifecycle management (PLM) vendors, i.e., Siemens PLM, Dassault Systemes, Parametric Technology Corporation (PTC), Oracle Agile PLM, and SAP PLM, hardly any noise comes from smaller PLM providers in the lower end of the market. To be certain, many smaller PLM players, who had been catering to the mid-market, such as former MatrixOne or Agile Software, have lately been gobbled up by their larger counterparts.
Thus, in addition to Arena Solutions and its pure on-demand PLM offering as well as Aras’ open source PLM offering, the only other viable choice for smaller enterprises remains Omnify Software. Privately held Omnify Software is headquartered in Tewksbury, Massachusetts (US), with another US office in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
Part 1 of this blog series talked about Consona Corporation’s recent acquisition of leading open source and cloud computing enterprise resource planning (ERP) provider Compiere. After reading a slew of speculative blog posts (including the one from TEC’s free and open source [FOSS] buff and advocate Josh Chalifour), I had an incisive briefing with Consona’s CEO Jeff Tognoni, to give the company a fair chance to explain its strategy and the rationale behind the acquisition.
In Part 1, Tognoni first dispelled any idea that Consona’s intentions were to to copy the much larger and also acquisitive vendor Infor, as suggested by the related ERP Graveyard blog post. Thereafter, he explained that his interest in Compiere’s cloud platform coincided with (and was validated by) the recent launch of Consona’s CRM Cloud leveraging Amazon Web Services (AWS) Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Simple Storage Service (S3) for the server infrastructure and platform.
In early June Consona Corporation’s analyst relationship (AR) contact forewarned me about the company’s upcoming acquisition of a “leading open-source and cloud computing enterprise resource planning (ERP) vendor” and asked about my availability for a briefing once the acquisition was closed. After consultation with TEC’s free and open source software (FOSS) buff Josh Chalifour, we quickly identified Compiere [evaluate this product] as the most likely target (not to say prey).
Namely, this open source software vendor had been eerily quiet for a while (and ignoring our repeated calls for update briefings) and lately there had been much less activity within its once vibrant FOSS user community. The rumors about Compiere running out of “dough” and looking for a white knight had also floated occasionally. Once the acquisition was made official on June 16, 2010, Josh was swift with his blog post that mostly talked about the abovementioned observations prior to the merger and gave some speculations about Compiere’s future under Consona.
In the enterprise open source space, a notable change came to light today affecting Compiere users and partners. Consona announced its acquisition of Compiere.
Compiere started back in 1999. One of its founders explained to me that the company’s business (circa 2004) largely came from support, migration, and priority requests from clients. An integral component of the delivery model was Compiere’s partners. So Compiere focused on providing second-level support to their network of local partners. These areas are where I’m most curious about Compiere’s move to the Consona fold. Read the rest of this entry »
In 2009, I attended two Gartner Summit events: the Gartner Business Process Management (BPM) Summit in March in San Diego; and Gartner Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Summit in September in Scottsdale. I not only saw a number of same vendors at both events, but both events also had many similar themes, such as customer service, workflow automation, business processes, collaboration, customer retention, social media, key performance indicators (KPIs)/performance metrics, and so on and so forth.
It might be indicative that BPM and CRM are quite converging disciplines in that Gartner found enough synergy to host its CRM and BPM summits back-to-back in Washington, D.C. in late 2008 (events I did not attend). While BPM vendors are beginning to offer more CRM capabilities, CRM vendors are “returning the favor” with BPM features (e.g., workflow and business rules engines).
This process (no pun intended) may have begun several years ago. Namely, in 2005, the former Onyx Corporation (acquired by Consona Coporation in 2006 and meanwhile renamed into Consona Customer Management), began shifting its focus from highly contested and commoditized CRM applications toward more adaptive BPM-enabled applications via the former Onyx Process Manager in 2005. Consona’s CRM division does not sell its BPM module outside its CRM offering, but is proud to talk about its product’s adaptability due to native BPM features.
Both software categories also grew (CRM about 5 percent and BPM about 10 percent) in 2009, in contrast to a decline in most other enterprise applications. When money is tight, shrewd businesses look for ways to do more with less, and BPM seems to hold the promise of improving the customer’s experience. As companies cite business processes affected by CRM as their top challenge, CRM vendors have moved from focusing on pure technology to enabling processes, and BPM capabilities have taken a greater role in CRM suites. This convergence leads me to quote Forrest Gump: “We goes together like peas and carrots.”
Many CFOs, CTOs, supply chain managers, and logistics managers struggle to decide which supply chain management (SCM) software is best-suited to their organizational needs. It doesn’t help that there is an abundance (literally hundreds) of SCM solutions available on the market. Today, I’ll help you understand key SCM modules, and look at some key players with well established SCM solutions. Read the rest of this entry »
Part 1 of this blog series introduced the need for knowledge management (KM) software applications as part of a more comprehensive and strategic service management (SSM) suite. One such broad SSM suite has been advanced by Servigistics, and Part 2 zoomed into the capabilities of one particular part of the Servigistics SSM suite: Service Knowledge Management (SKM). Read the rest of this entry »
Sadly, it is not difficult for so many of us to concede that, except for maybe the historic elections in the US and the successful Olympic Games in Beijing, 2008 was a terrible and somber year. It felt long-drawn-out, and many of us will have trouble sinking it easily into oblivion.
Without even talking about our retirement funds and investments being slashed by about 40 percent (as part of a potentially more far-reaching financial crisis) or about 2.6 million jobs lost in the US only, just look at mushrooming late 2008 layoffs news at even the biggest and typically impervious enterprise applications vendors. For example, both Bruce Richardson of AMR Research and Frank Scavo of Enterprise Systems Spectator have reported in their respective December 2008 blog posts about Infor’s deliberate preparations for a downturn.
Along similar lines (although about some vendors there have been rumors rather than a public acknowledgement by the vendor) were the recent cost-cutting and restructuring moves by Sage, Consona, Lawson Software, Oracle, and Epicor Software. The market leader SAP has not yet been plagued by major layoffs per se, although there have been rumors/reports about the recently enacted stringent internal corporate-wide cost-cutting policies, such as restricted traveling, training, events, and so on.
I am indeed aware of the fact that there was no traditional SAP Influencer/Analyst Summit this past fall/winter, after several years of being a major winter event solely for industry analysts and media. Thus, trying to think positively, I am happy to report about coming across at least one vendor with upbeat news and upright posture in these dreary days.
In fact, how often have we heard about a mid-market enterprise resource planning (ERP) provider’s quarterly global results in late 2008 revealing a 37 percent increase in revenue and sales (with 30 percent growth in North America), with the company claiming many significant new orders worth over US$ 1 million? Read the rest of this entry »
Even in such a volatile stock market and under investor/regulatory scrutiny, going public as a means of getting some capital investment is still an option — the most recent examples being Deltek and NetSuite. On the established public vendor side, CDC Software, Epicor Software, Lawson Software and Oracle (if not even SAP too) would be examples of mostly unrelentingly acquisitive vendors in the enterprise applications space.
On the other hand, there has been a general feeling lately of a money crunch in the private equity and venture capitalist (VC) world for those software companies that still prefer to remain privately-held and yet acquisitive. Some of these vendors have been discussed in my recent “ERP Reincarnations” posts, Part I and Part II.
In other words, can the likes of Infor, Consona Corporation and Solarsoft really continue without running out of steam? Namely, besides Solarsoft’s continued acquisition activity of late (including the offer to acquire the United Kingdom (UK)-based Chelford Group, where the SSI-World’s versatile TROPOS product is a part of the business), once seemingly unstoppable Infor and Consona have lately taken a noted break. Read the rest of this entry »
While the Part I of this topic focused on Consona Corporation (former M2M Holdings), this time the discussion continues with the recently minted Solarsoft entity, privately owned by Marlin Equity Partners. True, in Part I, besides Infor, I could have also mentioned as old news the renaming of Verticent ERP Plus (formerly PowerCerv [evaluate this product]) as part of the ASA International parent and SoftBrands (formerly Fourth Shift and AremisSoft), but these companies have not that candidly professed their appetite for more acquisitions.
In any case, in April 2007 Canada-based CMS Software merged with the United Kingdom (UK)-based XKO Software Limited, a provider of specialist enterprise software. CMS has been in the enterprise resource planning (ERP) business for over 20 years, and, naturally, it has always looked for ways to improve the services and products it delivers to its customers. As the market increasingly demands consistent local service delivered on a global basis, the company hoped to enhance its ability to meet that demand via the merger.
But, when CMS and XKO merged they knew that they would eventually need to find a new name for the combined business. Namely, both firms were relatively well known in their local markets but the names have lost their original meaning and communicated little to new customers in new markets. According to the letter sent to all customers and partners, putting together a six-letter acronym didn’t make sense, so the company held an internal contest and the name “Solarsoft” was chosen, as suggested by a member of the staff. Read the rest of this entry »
Well, the ERP Graveyard blog might sometimes be slightly deceiving, since not all enterprise resource planning (ERP) products necessarily die there. Some of them might even be resurected under a different name and ownership.
To that end, Infor might even seem like old news today. It’s been five years since its formation (no pun intended here, given its subsequent acquisition of former Formation Systems, with the Infor Optima PLM product as a result). Also, many articles have meanwhile been written on our web site about Infor’s collection/arsenal of once all but deceased ERP products, such as:
However, 2007 has seen the emergence of two brand new names in the space — Consona Corporation and Solarsoft Business Solutions. Read the rest of this entry »