Enterprise headlines and summaries, 2009-02-10

  • Salesforce.com adds sales collaboration functions to latest release
    Salesforce.com’s Spring ’09 upgrade, released today, contains more than 50 functional enhancements, but the two functions the San Francisco-based company elected to highlight focus on sales collaboration, an area getting a lot more attention from CRM suite vendors recently. Opportunity Genius connects opportunities with similar characteristics within a company’s Salesforce.com application, allowing salespeople to connect with colleagues working on similar deals and share best practices. “Most customers have hundreds of opportunities,” said Al Falcione, senior director of product marketing with Salesforce.com. “Genius looks in and matches fields across them so a salesperson can find similar deals, they can see what content worked, what meetings worked and can contact that sales person. Genius is automated; there’s no burden on the salesperson to enter information.” In addition, integration with Salesforce.com Content, the company’s content management application, allows users to crea
  • Microsoft readies smartphone assault on Apple
    The Wall Street Journal reported Monday that Microsoft is getting ready to launch an online marketplace akin to Apple’s App Store. Microsoft is also readying a more sophisticated version of its mobile operating system called Windows Mobile 6.5, the Journal reported.
  • Microsoft gets 10,000th patent
    Microsoft’s patent push is paying off. The software maker, which stepped up its rush to the patent office five years ago, has reached a milestone, having received its 10,000th U.S. patent earlier this month. Curtis Wong, who was listed on both Microsoft’s 5,000th and 10,000th patents is also known for being one of the forces behind the Worldwide Telescope project. The efforts have propelled Microsoft to the upper echelon among patent filers, though IBM still gets more patents issued than any other company. Last year, Big Blue became the first company to have 4,000 patents issued in a single year. Microsoft, meanwhile, has risen to the top 5 among patent recipients and for the last two years has topped a key ranking of overall patent portfolio strength.
  • A ballast’s-eye view of the storm’s center
    He arrives by launch, well after his employees, at 4:48 p.m. Ellison has big feet, well-tanned legs, raptor’s eyes and a close-cropped beard suitable for a villain in “The Mask of Zorro.” His arrival alters the vibe on board, but only subtly, and there is nothing imperious bout Ellison’s manner as he pitches in to help a Swedish crew member, Magnus Augustson, with the menial if delicate task of taping over the word Toyota on NZL 92’s mainsail (a team sponsored by BMW does not want a rival car company’s insignia cluttering up the view, certainly not in this economy).
  • SAP Launches Investigative Case Management Software to Help Police Solve Crimes
    SAP AG (NYSE: SAP) today introduced the SAP(R) Investigative Case Management for Public Sector package to support police and other investigating authorities in their efforts to prevent, detect and investigate crime. The new software package addresses a wider range of law enforcement needs across the complete investigation lifecycle — from instigation and initial investigation through secondary investigation, case finalization and review. By broadening its solution portfolio, SAP now integrates the back-office and core operational processes for investigating authorities. The announcement was made at the 12th European Police Congress, being held February 10-11 in Berlin, Germany.
  • Salesforce’s Latest Hones in on Content, Collaboration
    Traffic on the public site is captured by the Salesforce.com system, revealing, for example, the number of hits on a given document and how recently it was viewed, according to Al Falcione, Salesforce.com’s senior director of product marketing. This enables salespeople to detect which marketing materials were most successful, he said. The Spring ’09 release also adds a feature that allows users to search through slide-deck materials created in Salesforce.com and quickly cobble them together into a new presentation.
  • Dave Duffield Explains The Stickiness Of SaaS – Plug Into The Cloud
    SaaS has the potential to be highly profitable because it’s “sticky,” says Duffield. In other words, it can be difficult for a customer to move off a software service and to another SaaS provider, and even harder to move from SaaS to on-premises licensed software. When a customer signs on for a software service, it’s also signing on for operating systems, middleware, servers, network connections, databases, and the talent that goes along with all that. Yes, it’s signing on for an IT infrastructure, particularly if it’s making a big bet on SaaS, such as using Workday for human resources, payroll, and financials. “Once people have implemented Workday, they’re stuck, in a very positive way, with our solution and the services we provide, ” he says.
  • Roche CIO on SAP, consultants, certification, and system integrators
    I do believe the old $50 million a year integration model is dead; the challenge is for the systems integrators to reinvent themselves in this new world. The old Accenture model, where you trained [inexperienced] consultants for many months on your dollar, just doesn’t work anymore. The hardest thing is to get the consultants out at the end of the project, because they try and hang around as much as possible.
  • Gloss going off SuccessFactors?
    In yesterday’s earnings call, Lars Dalgaard, CEO of SuccessFactors reported year over year revenue up 77% yet at the same time confirmed layoffs of 22% in the period. This is being spun as a tactic to stay ahead but is that really the case?
  • NetSuite Reports Record Growth; Evidence CRM Solutions Help in a Down Economy
    “I am especially excited that we posted the first non-GAAP profitable quarter in the company’s history even against the headwinds of global economic challenges,” said Nelson. “Furthermore, we posted record quarterly and annual revenue, reached a record average selling price and grew our bookings significantly quarter over quarter. This is a strong performance in any quarter, and is especially impressive with business spending on equipment and software falling 27.8 percent, the worst in a half century.”
  • UPDATE 2-NetSuite posts 1st profitable qtr, excluding items
    It reported profit, excluding items, of 1 cent per share, beating the average analyst estimate for a loss of 1 cent, according to Reuters Estimates. The company said the results were buoyed by strong sales of a new software suite designed to help multinational companies monitor the consolidated financial performance of their businesses across the globe. The average sales price for that product, known as NetSuite OneWorld, was more than $100,000 per customer per year during the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31. That’s about three times the $34,000 average for all deals that NetSuite signed during the quarter, Chief Executive Zach Nelson said in an interview.
  • What recession? Oracle support provider quadrupled its customer base
    In a year when a lot of other companies floundered, Rimini Street, Inc. — a services provider for PeopleSoft and other Oracle-owned software products — picked up 150 new business customers in 2008, four times its 2007 number.
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