The New York DCI CRM Conference & Exposition held this week at the Javitz Center became the forum for several industry announcements from notable companies, but perhaps the most notable industry announcement came from FrontRange Solutions Inc., which released its CRM mid-market solution, based on the .Net platform.
Similar to the large corporate enterprise vendors, FrontRange is going the way of vertical-oriented applications. The solution, called, GoldMine CustomerIQ, is designed for the financial services and select manufacturing markets. "We found that as businesses seek to get closer to their customers, what most of them want is a solution designed for their industry, rather than a solution with bells and whistles they will never use. GoldMine CustomerIQ is unique because it mimics a customer's business processes rather than forcing the customer to conform to the constraints of the software," says Patrick Bultema, president and CEO of FrontRange Solutions.
The vertically designed solution enables users to customize the contact management function according to industry preferences, such as projects and quotes for manufacturing, and clients and portfolios for financial services.
GoldMine CustomerIQ for Manufacturing offers additional service and support functions unique to that industry, such as the ability to define, create, and track a case/issue, along with coordinated scheduling through calendar integration.
Jerry Lumpkin, senior vice president of marketing at FrontRange says the company's go-to-market strategy includes training third-party systems integrators to sell to and provide service for its mid-market customers.
The announcement came the same day as Siebel Systems Inc. announced its intention to support .NET, further validating the platform's arrival. The FrontRange product will be available in November in limited release, with general availability slated for early 2003.
While the industry tends to look at executives at the large corporate enterprise vendors to offer insight and guidance, as did Tom Siebel during his keynote speech Wednesday morning, most of the vendors on the show floor serve the mid-market.
While FrontRange's announcement is perhaps the most significant of the small and medium enterprise (SME) companies the company was flanked by several other mid-market companies such as Pivotal, Onyx, Microsoft Great Plains, and ACCPAC. For the large enterprise vendors' part, Siebel, SAP, and E.piphany set up their ware at the show. PeopleSoft and Oracle, however, were nowhere to be seen.