Attunity to Take Care of Infor’s Mainframe Systems

Attunity, a provider of information availability software solutions, has announced an OEM reseller agreement with Infor, which will enable Infor to offer Attunity’s mainframe data connectivity software to its customers using Infor E Series and M Series applications (which came via the Geac acquisition). Infor E Series and M Series are mainframe-based financials and payroll/personnel applications used by hundreds of customers worldwide (going way back to the days when Dun & Bradstreet Software was in the ERP business).

Attunity helps companies abridge their need for new technology without leaving their (big) data stranded and locked away in outdated systems. The company's products are used to integrate modern business applications with data residing on older legacy systems and databases, allowing customers to automate and manage business processes within enterprises and with their trading partners. I am not an expert in mainframe systems, but these products have staying power. Take report writers as an example: one would think that, given the trends for self-service business intelligence (BI), the usage of Crystal Reports (now SAP Crystal Solutions) would be severely reduced. Yet, IT departments keep rolling out more instances of Crystal.

Sometimes you can’t displace legacy solutions because they are used for applications other than their main purpose, and companies have invested heavily in those proprietary IT resources. Many of these types of solutions have been in place for years. Since more companies are consolidating and expanding IT infrastructure tools, it might be easier for major vendors to partner than to discontinue or replace tools by developing them in-house. Attunity provides software directly and indirectly through a number of partners such as Microsoft, Oracle, IBM, and HP. Headquartered in Boston, Attunity serves its customers via offices in North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific, and through a network of local partners.

With this partnership, Infor should help customers further integrate and automate business processes with other enterprise applications to improve their business operations. Infor ION is Infor’s lightweight standards-based integration middleware platform, but this particular agreement is related to solutions for Infor’s proprietary applications that run on the mainframe. This agreement addresses only those needs today, but Attunity offers connectivity to many sources and targets, and is open to working with Infor again to support other solutions if the opportunity arises.

Nearly 20 years old, Attunity has several competitors (most notably Informatica) and Infor had reportedly conducted a few proofs of concepts before finally selecting Attunity as its OEM partner of choice. The company is in the real-time data replication business, which is in contrast to traditional batch-based extract, transform, load (ETL) data integration. Its solutions enable access, sharing, and distribution of data, including big data, across the maze of heterogeneous enterprise platforms, organizations, and the cloud that is today’s IT environment.
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