TEC Industry Watch: Enterprise Software News for the Week of July 30, 2012

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Ventura Manufacturing selects IQMS
Industry tags: Manufacturing, Assembly
"Ventura Manufacturing, Inc. has adopted IQMS's manufacturing ERP software after reviewing multiple top-tier ERP vendors. Venture Manufacturing is headquartered in Zeeland, Michigan, and provides component assembly for furniture and automotive customers. Ventura will also run IQMS' EDI module and customer/vendor portals, and plan to implement the IQMS quality modules. The ERP system will replace Ventura's previous in-house developed system, which reportedly lacked data integration and was missing tools to support the growing complexities of its business."—Ted Rohm, TEC ERP Analyst

Six London boroughs select Oracle ERP
Industry tags: Public administration and defense
"Application sharing is an ongoing trend for European governmental structures, and particularly in the UK. Six boroughs of London have agreed to pool their resources and benefit from lower costs and economies of scale. The latest version (version 12) of Oracle's E-Business Suite won the deal. But in contrast with several cases involving UNIT4 wins, separate boroughs are expecting to use the same ERP system technically, but each in its own way, so the winning system needed to support this requirement. At the same time, boroughs will be able to easily exchange or share certain data if required."—Aleksey Osintsev, TEC Analyst

South African restaurant chain Nando’s selects Sage ERP X3
Industry tags: Hotels and restaurants
"Nando's currently operates hundreds of restaurants across South Africa along with 30 others internationally, and has decided to implement Sage ERP X3 as its core global solution. The primary need for the new system was to integrate financial information across all divisions and provide central financial reporting functionality. The company also manages complex distribution and logistics, as well as projects for building new restaurant facilities projects; all this required a system that was both powerful and sufficiently stable. In line with best system selection practices, Nando’s performed a dry run of the software with data migration, and ran two systems (i.e., old and new) in parallel until the company was sure it had made the right choice."—Aleksey Osintsev, TEC Analyst

City of Charlotte, N.C., signs $8 million municipal ERP contract with Tyler Technologies
Industry tags: public sector, local government
"Tyler’s deep public sector knowledge and its particular statewide expertise and references (there are 80 Munis ERP clients throughout North Carolina) have been giving their competition a run for their money. SAP, Oracle, CACI, DynTek, UNIT4, Deltek, Micorosoft Dynamics, etc. should watch out."—Principal TEC Analyst P.J. Jakovljevic


SciQuest acquires assets of Upside Software
Industry tags: spend management, cross-industry
"For a few years now, the desire among spend management software suite vendors to extend their functional footprints, diversify their offerings, and create up- and cross-sales opportunities within their existing customers has created a spate of (mostly) complementary vendor acquisitions. Think of SAP acquiring Frictionless Software and very recently Ariba (after Ariba had done its fair share of acquisitions)—not to mention IBM acquiring Emptoris, after Emptoris too had made its fair share of acquisitions in this space. SciQuest’s acquisition of Upside Software adds to that list.

As a result, most strategic sourcing software solution vendors nowadays also offer spend analysis, contract management, and supplier performance management tools within their broader suites. With this concrete acquisition, SciQuest adds to its suite of source-to-settle solutions powering the entire procurement lifecycle, including supplier management, strategic sourcing, CLM, inventory management, invoicing, and accounts payable.

This is a good catch for SciQuest, and apparently without breaking the bank, if one isn't much concerned about the two companies’ disparate technologies (i.e., Java for SciQuest and Microsoft .NET for Upside). I feel that this deal will benefit all parties involved, because with the increased resources and sales power of the SciQuest organization comes expanded reach and further product innovation for Upside’s best-of-breed contract management solution."—Principal TEC Analyst P.J. Jakovljevic

Autodesk signs agreement to acquire Socialcam
Industry tags: digital art, personal design and fabrication, home design and entertainment
"While some might argue that Autodesk has run out of its own ideas and is now buying a new asset without really being sure about what to do with it, mobile computing, the cloud, and social media are improving and changing the way people design, engineer, and create products. Video seems to be an ideal medium for professionals and consumers alike to communicate and share their design ideas. In theory Socialcam looks like a great demo feature, but the file sizes are likely to be very large and download times might limit usage. How long will it take for someone to provide an example of a new design, a few minutes or much longer?

In any case, Autodesk is likely following Dassault Systèmes with its '3D Experience' and social listening initiatives about capturing and gauging end-users' and consumers' preferences in product design. Dassault Systèmes and Autodesk are moving into a very consumer-oriented area and it’s not clear that customers are interested in buying those types of solutions from a CAD company. Detecting end-user preferences in design is a very new trend. Visionary companies will be interested, but only a small percentage of companies will be focused on this topic in the near term.

One difference between Dassault and Autodesk I see is that Dassault is still aiming at enterprise customers while making its acquisitions, whereas some of Autodesk's recent deals really have consumers in mind. Dassault Systèmes is trying to 'consumerize' 3D for more than just capturing product feedback. I believe the vendor truly thinks that people want to live in immersive 3D "experiences," which amounts to nothing less than to the idea that regular people (business users) should interact with 3D data directly."—Principal TEC Analyst P.J. Jakovljevic

Trimble to acquire WinEstimator to extend Meridian Systems' capabilities for general contractors and owners
Industry tags: Construction, A/E/C
"Regarding WinEst, Trimble is not able to provide any additional details until the transaction closes. We look forward to scheduling a briefing with the company to cover this in detail at the appropriate time. In any case, Trimble and Meridian view Oracle’s acquisition of Skire (Meridian’s archrival) and Primavera (a few years back) as a validation of their strategy. The market for capital construction management solutions is at an inflection point, where the broad set of technologies is maturing to deliver the next level of value to construction project portfolio management (PPM).

However, to be able to bring this next level of value to the market requires a variety of technologies, including purpose-built PPM software, building information management (BIM), which Trimble has via acquisitions of SketchUp, etc.), and field productivity devices to streamline complex construction processes and deliver true business intelligence (BI). This expertise in construction project management and the plan-build-operate (PBO) domain transcends ERP-centric approaches, and Meridian/Trimble is positioned with a broad array of technologies to deliver on this vision."—Principal TEC Analyst P.J. Jakovljevic

Rosslyn Analytics launches enterprise data discovery maturity model
Industry tags: BI, spend analysis, cross-industry
"Rosslyn Analytics launched a self-assessment enterprise data discovery maturity model, whereby companies can now self-assess and benchmark their analytic capabilities in real time against industry peers. The idea for Rosslyn’s enterprise data discovery model came out of a gap in the market, specifically, a lack of self-assessment tools to help businesses understand the potential of enterprise data. Traditional maturity models are IT-centric, designed to help businesses purchase technology. There isn’t a maturity model designed to help the business users (as well as the IT departments) assess and instantly benchmark where their business is currently in terms of exploiting data using analytics.

Rosslyn recognizes that every business views data and adopts analytics differently—but there are common drivers of success (such as data extraction, categorization, etc.), which are required to fuel better decision-making because analytical apps are only as good as the underlying data. The model takes businesses on a journey with a particular focus on data and the tools and processes needed to efficiently transform data into actionable information so it’s relevant and useful to the individual, department, or organization within the enterprise. This is a smart way for Rosslyn to engage prospective customers early in the sales cycle as well as to help existing customers. It is likely that its competitors will follow suit if they haven’t already been offering similar incentives."—Principal TEC Analyst P.J. Jakovljevic
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