Oracle tries for information focus in app suite update

Oracle will next month roll out version 11 of its application software suites. Version 11 includes financials, manufacturing and distribution, and a new product, sales force automation. They will all be Web-enabled. Asia-Pacific senior vice-president Der-ek Williams says the software has been repositioned as information-based applications under the direction of CEO Larry Ellison.

Oracle will next month roll out version 11 of its application software suites.

Version 11 includes financials, manufacturing and distribution, and a new product, sales force automation. They will all be Web-enabled.

Asia-Pacific senior vice-president Der-ek Williams says the software has been repositioned as information-based applications under the direction of CEO Larry Ellison.

"The processes these days are taken as a given. What becomes important is the ability to get the information out.

"We now have three levels of reporting — previously product families that had never been integrated and marketed."

The three levels are: reporting within the application; decision support on top of that; and Oracle Discoverer (data mining).

Williams, who is based in Singapore, says Oracle New Zealand and Australia continue to perform strongly despite the economic setbacks caused by the Asian currency problems.

"The most difficult parts of Asia are Indonesia, Thailand and Korea, and the Philippines and Malaysia are slowing down. However, Singapore, China and Taiwan are very strong, with the Taiwanese taking the opportunity to invest heavily in other markets.

"I don't think we've seen the full effect yet in Malaysia."

He says Oracle continues to make the transition from a product to a solutions company. Services are now 50% of the business in most subsidiaries, though they make up 60% — and growing — of the New Zealand subsidiary's revenue.

Services are defined as consulting around Oracle's products, implementation, skills transfer, training and after-sales support — but not systems integration. The New Zealand company now has a permanent headcount of 178.

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