PeopleSoft, Salesnet pursue hosted CRM

SAN FRANCISCO (11/17/2003) - Attempting to carve out unique slices of the CRM pie, PeopleSoft Inc. and Salesnet Inc. this week will announce extensions to their hosted CRM services.

PeopleSoft will announce the addition of two former J.D. Edwards & Co. application suites -- renamed PeopleSoft Enterprise One and PeopleSoft World -- to its hosted-services platform.

Both product families -- formerly known at J.D. Edwards as World and One World -- offer CRM, supply chain, financials, and human-capital management.

PeopleSoft began its hosted services in 1999, said Bill Henry, PeopleSoft's vice president of marketing and strategy. "The (hosted) market is going to grow significantly, and with the economy turning around, customers need to focus IT staff," Henry said.

PeopleSoft also announced a new version of Enterprise One 8.9 with a number of new components, including Engineering Project Management, Demand Management, Supply Chain Management, and Asset Lifecycle Management.

Salesnet will announce that it is pursuing an OEM strategy, signing on partners to offer branded versions of Salesnet's service.

The company plans to announce this week a deal with Encoda Systems Inc., a software and services provider for broadcasters and other media organizations. Encoda will offer a private-label version of Salesnet, dubbed Media Exec CRM, to its 137,000 sales executive customers. Two Encoda clients, Comcast's Chicago and Atlanta offices, have already signed on for the service.

Michael Doyle, chairman and CEO of Salesnet hopes the strategy will set the company apart from the crowd. "The idea would be to be bigger than by this time next year, but to do it using different tactics," he said.

Sheryl Kingstone, an analyst at The Yankee Group said the competition will be tough. "The only way (Salesnet) can potentially compete is to pack up their technology and offer it through a channel," she said. "They don't have the brand to compete with Siebel and Salesforce, but they have great technology."

PeopleSoft's and Encoda's services are now available.

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