OpenText digests Hummingbird, talks to TechTonics

OpenText plans further up-skilling for the TechTonics team

Following last year’s acquisition of Hummingbird, enterprise content management vendor OpenText will launch a detailed product road map later this month that will outline where the two software products are headed.

Hummingbird is used by many New Zealand organisations, so they will be keeping a close eye on the future direction of the software. At a fundamental level, Hummingbird is an architectural platform for document management and enterprise content, while OpenText’s core offerings are about collaboration and content management.

Document and enterprise content management are becoming pivotal for organisations as they face a multitude of regulatory requirements, such as Sarbannes Oxley, or, in the case of New Zealand, meeting the legal requirements of the new Public Records Act.

OpenText is the world’s largest independent provider of enterprise content management software, with around 46,000 customers worldwide. It had revenue of $US409 million (NZ$589 million) last year.

OpenText’s senior vice president for the Asia-Pacific region, Owen Taraniuk, was in New Zealand recently to look at expanding the relationship with TechTonics, which represents both products.

“We’re doing a huge amount of training in the Asia Pacific region and we’re discussing further up-skilling for the TechTonics team,” he says. “We’ve gone through a transitional period building up our professional services. We’ve grown the combined support capabilities.”

He says OpenText will increase the functionality of Hummingbird. “We have very deep SAP functionality in the business process management and archiving spaces, and strong digital asset and multi-media management.”

Taraniuk says there has been a positive reaction to the buyout after some initial concern about the future of Hummingbird applications. “We’re investing in the further development of those applications.

OpenText has formed a global business unit dedicated to the public sector, he adds. It has its own research and development budget. “Australia and New Zealand are extremely key markets for us, so we’re gearing R&D to local requuirements.”

He says OpenText is very heavily focused on compliance at a global level and is ready to address those issues with out-of-the-box modules.

“The enterprise content market is starting to take off, with major companies such as Oracle, SAP and Microsoft moving into the infrastructure space. We’ve formed global alliances with all three.”

TechTonics managing director Ross Bidmead says the enterprise content management landscape is changing dramatically. “It’s a bit like the early days of accounting systems where you’d buy separate systems for things like general ledgers. Now, the lead players are offering much more. It’s not about buying a repository and building modules. If you buy a small-player solution, you’re likely to get stuck.” He says the OpenText takeover has been well received in NZ.