CA casts itself as e-business vendor

Electronic-business will be the overarching theme here this week at the annual Computer Associates International (CA) user conference, with the company touting itself and its software as a key player in that market.

Vice President Yogesh Gupta's first press conference here yesterday provided a rough outline of the e-business theme, which the company will elaborate on in announcements of new partnerships and applications which will be made this week. The company is also expected to announce general release of its Jasmine ii infrastructure.

Gupta highlighted how ASPs are using CA's Unicenter management tools, and also how its Neugent neural network agent technology can drive a high level of personalization for e-business Web sites.

Other big news will be integration plans for the Sterling Software line. CA recently completed the acquisition of Sterling and now is working on integrating the company into the CA organization. CA President Sanjay Kumar said that reorganisation of Sterling and integration of its products with CA will occur within the next two or three weeks, with product interface integration within 90 days.

CA's push to define itself as an e-business vendor here follows where it sees the greatest business opportunities currently, according to Gupta.

In the last two quarters for which it has released financial reports, CA's revenue derived from e-business has risen from one third to 40 percent, Gupta said.

"It's been a strategy all along," CA Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Charles Wang said when questioned by reporters about the e-business push. "We obviously can do a lot more to articulate this message even better."

That is, he noted, part of the purpose of the user show.

The key piece to CA's e-business push is integration and its Jasmine ii product line, one analyst said.

"By our definition, Jasmine ii is an application server but it also has a lot of elements that can add intelligence and predictive content," said Steve Garone, program vice president at International Data Corp.'s application development and deployment program in Framingham, Massachusetts.

The combination of CA's Neugent technology and the AION business rules engine from Platinum in Jasmine ii is a unique mix, he added.

"We hear all the time from users that the technical problems of development and deployment is one part of the problem," Garone said. "But understanding business processes and setting up rules to process and analyze them is an equally important and difficult step."

CA World continues through this week in New Orleans.

Martin LaMonica, executive news editor at InfoWorld, contributed to this report.

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