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PeopleSoft to incorporate JDE into CRM plans

A new 18-month CRM road map from PeopleSoft includes two separate product lines and additional functionality brought over as part of the J.D. Edwards acquisition.

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- At its annual user show, PeopleSoft Inc. is detailing its CRM product plans now that its acquisition of midmarket rival J.D. Edwards & Co. is complete.

PeopleSoft has sketched an 18-month CRM road map that includes two product lines: PeopleSoft Enterprise CRM and PeopleSoft EnterpriseOne CRM for the midmarket.

The strategy outlined for Enterprise CRM includes a major release, code-named Kapalua, due out in the second quarter of 2004. In Kapalua, PeopleSoft plans to include usability enhancements and new customer portfolio management capabilities, as well as two new vertical market offerings -- asset management and wealth management. Both of the new vertical-specific software sets would rely on intellectual property gleaned from J.D. Edwards.

PeopleSoft is also planning a Process Integration Pack to allow users of J.D. Edwards' back-office software to better utilize PeopleSoft Enterprise CRM.

PeopleSoft EnterpriseOne CRM will come in both horizontal and vertical flavors, with a strong focus on manufacturing and asset-intensive industries. It will be built on a single architecture -- J.D. Edwards' 5 -- and be designed for fewer users sharing multiple roles.

The next release, called EnterpriseOne CRM 8.9, is due out in the fourth quarter and will include a common EnterpriseOne platform and tools, unicode for enhanced language support, and functional enhancements, such as beefed-up case management, branch scripting, automated claim processes and expanded order management integration.

The next major midmarket release, code-named Mount Evans, will tap contact center functionality from PeopleSoft; it is due out in late 2004.

While declining to share specific market goals, Barby McGann, PeopleSoft's vice president of CRM product management, said the company has high hopes for gaining share in the competitive CRM midmarket. Currently, about 80% of PeopleSoft's CRM sales are in the enterprise space, McGann said. She added that J.D. Edwards only has about 100 companies using its CRM software, which is still a relatively immature product, and the company feels cross-sell opportunities exist within the JDE customer base.

Customer reaction

Few companies greeted the PeopleSoft-J.D. Edwards merger more enthusiastically than C.B. Richard Ellis Inc., Newport Beach, Calif. The commercial real estate services firm has had a relationship with both vendors for nearly a decade.

When she first heard about the acquisition, Louise Brandy, vice president and business systems manager for the company, said she was "thrilled to death."

"We were already trying to consolidate the number of applications we have," Brandy said. C.B. Richard Ellis runs PeopleSoft Financials 7.5 and PeopleSoft Help Desk 8.8, and the firm is implementing PeopleSoft Sales 8.8. It also runs J.D. Edwards' property management software on IBM Corp.'s iSeries.

Brandy said that C.B. Richard Ellis programmers who work in RPG, the iSeries programming environment, are already familiarizing themselves with PeopleTools for an eventual move in that direction. She said she's happy to have new product options emerging from the merger.

Overall integration

In the past 60 days, PeopleSoft has been mapping out an overall integration strategy that extends beyond CRM. Earlier this month, the Pleasanton, Calif.-based company said it would run three distinct product lines: PeopleSoft Enterprise, business software for large companies; PeopleSoft EnterpriseOne, a midmarket set based on J.D. Edwards applications; and PeopleSoft World, J.D. Edwards software designed for shops running IBM's iSeries platform.

PeopleSoft World will be supported and maintained, but functional enhancements will be limited, executives said. A previously planned release of PeopleSoft World is due to ship later this year.

Ram Gupta, PeopleSoft's executive vice president of products and technology, said the new product road map will include two components: integration between PeopleSoft and J.D. Edwards offerings, plus intellectual property transfers between the product lines.

Within 90 days, PeopleSoft Enterprise products will include J.D. Edwards' real estate management functionality, and PeopleSoft EnterpriseOne -- formerly J.D. Edwards technology -- will benefit from PeopleSoft supplier relationship management capabilities.

By early next year, PeopleSoft Enterprise will integrate J.D. Edwards' asset management features.

Gupta said the combined domain-expertise of the two companies would lead to product innovation.

"Our strategy is not about consolidation of the portfolio," Gupta said. "Out strategy is about keeping, improving and expanding the portfolio."


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