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September 1, 2005
There's a New Seer at Oracle: Oracle appointed a new president and CFO, former Microsoft executive Greg Maffei, in late June. Maffei is known for his history of investments and acquisitions at Microsoft, but copresident Safra Catz will continue to lead mergers and acquisitions for Oracle, according to the company. Analysts say Oracle had an executive hole to fill and that Maffei is a good fit. "This move is a financial/business one," says Sheryl Kingstone, CRM program manager at Yankee Group. "Oracle has plenty of technology--they needed more of a business execution guy."
Convergys Is Buying Deloitte's F&A BPO Business: Convergys announced plans in June to acquire the finance and accounting BPO business of Deloitte Consulting Outsourcing, a subsidiary of Deloitte Consulting. By doing so Convergys says it is addressing a growing market trend to outsource finance and accounting functions so that companies can focus on their products and services. "The finance and accounting BPO market is a fast-growing area of business process outsourcing," says Steve Rolls, executive vice president of global customer management and employee care for Convergys. "This acquisition was about us acquiring proven F&A BPO expertise by one of the leading financial services organizations. It's going to position us to expand our footprint to a whole new horizontal market."
The BPM Market Is Growing Faster Than Expected: The leading revenue earner in business performance management (BPM) applications in 2004 held more than twice the market share of its nearest competitor, according to "Worldwide Business Intelligence 2004 Vendor Shares," a July 2005 IDC report. Hyperion, the leader since 1999, easily overshadowed its nearest competitor, Oracle, with 20.7 percent of the industry versus 8.5 percent. Cognos, described as "very strong" by an IDC analyst, rounds out the top three.
CRM Analytics: Opportunities and Challenges: CRM analytics is branching across organizations to help drive customer retention and growth, especially in the financial services, retail, and telecommunications industries, according to "What's Hot in CRM Analytics," a presentation by Frost & Sullivan. The market's CAGR is expected to be roughly 13 percent from 2005 to 2008, moving from software license revenues of $553 million to $911 million. Also, the market is becoming increasingly vertical, with companies demanding solutions that fit their business.
Big Blue and Siebel Bolster Their SOA: Siebel Systems and IBM unveiled the Siebel 7.8 Web UI Dynamic Developer Kit, which leverages the IBM WebSphere Application Server and IBM WebSphere Portal. It is part of the companies' joint strategy to deliver hosted or service oriented architecture (SOA) apps. Siebel says developers can reuse the Siebel data model in a Web application, and use the IBM WebSphere Application Server to obtain Siebel functionality across channels. Although some companies, including NetSuite, Salesforce.com, and SAP, have been asserting their approaches to SOA, analysts say one of the biggest challenges is getting organizations to buy into the idea.
A Voice Self-Service Surge: RightNow Technologies unveiled its biggest push into the voice market with several voice-based announcements in June. Known for its Web self-service functionality and development into being a full suite CRM provider, the on-demand vendor completed the acquisition of Convergent Voice, a voice self-service solutions provider. It also announced the availability of eight modules; its first voice-related granted patent; and the hiring of Joseph Brown, former Edify CEO and general manager, and David Lanning, president and CEO of Convergent Voice. (For the full stories and more news, visit destinationcrm.com)
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