New Solution Roundup

Latest offerings from BigMachines, Covasoft, ILOG, IPNet, MindFlow Technologies

Tempe, AZ  March 1, 2002  A big announcement from BigMachines and a next-gen solution from IPNet are among the latest news on new-fangled solutions coming out of the provider community this week.

Here's a wrap-up of product-related announcements from BigMachines, Covasoft, ILOG, IPNet and MindFlow Technologies.

·        BigMachines, a provider of software solutions designed specifically for engineered products, released version 5 of its eponymous flagship solution, a front-end application that automates sales and services processes for new equipment and aftermarket parts. Formerly known as eSales, BigMachines 5 consists of 16 modules and divided into four categories: engineering, sales/customer relationship management, asset services and e-business infrastructure. The solution streamlines the selling process and enhances customer interaction throughout the equipment life cycle, from the initial sale to fulfillment and maintenance, according to the provider. The benefits? Reduced costs and improved efficiencies associated with streamlined application engineering, quotation, order fulfillment and aftermarket services, Foster City, Calif.-based BigMachines said.

·        Covasoft, a provider of solutions for managing information technology infrastructure, unveiled version 2 of CovaOne, an application that helps companies to identify the causes of system troubles and fix problems in their J2EE technologies. (J2EE, short for " Java 2 Enterprise Edition," is a standard for implementing enterprise applications.) CovaOne gives companies a single view of their entire e-business environment and automates problem avoidance and resolution through cross-domain correlation, according to Austin, Texas-based Covasoft. The provider also announced that Aviall, the world's largest independent distributor of new aviation parts, is extending its use of CovaOne in support of its e-business system.

·        Software component provider ILOG took the wraps off its JTGO 3.0 solution for creating user interfaces that allow network operators to monitor service levels in real time. ILOG, dually headquartered in Paris and Mountain View, Calif., said the new JTGO release lets network operators move beyond simple troubleshooting of network faults towards proactive monitoring of network availability, along with the service levels being delivered to their enterprise customers.

·        Newport Beach, Calif.-based IPNet announced the availability of the second generation of its e-business solutions aimed at simplifying the tasks required to manage a large number of diverse trading partners. BizManager, a line of Java-based transaction delivery and trading community management products, allows large companies to securely exchange business transactions  including electronic data interchange (EDI), eXtensible Markup Language (XML) and other protocols  with their trading partners. BizCollaborate, a collaborative framework for forecasting supply and demand, optimizes the supply chain by enabling partners to share data, according to IPNet. BizConnect, a Java-based connectivity solution, enables small and midsize enterprises (SMEs) to connect with large hubs. BizWeb is a Web browser offering for the smallest partners currently using paper processes and is custom-developed by IPNet Professional Services, requiring requires no software for the trading partner to install. IPNet offers vertical-specific solution sets for companies in the consumer products, retail and distribution (CPRD), health care, energy and financial services industries, as well as a horizontal solution that addresses the connectivity requirements of hub companies in a broad set of industries.

·        Strategic sourcing application provider MindFlow Technologies rolled out version 3 of its ProcureMind solution for e-sourcing. New features in the latest iteration of the software include category spend analysis functionality, which allows users to perform "what-if" spend analysis at each stage of the negotiation process to see the dynamic impact on item spend, item spend category aggregation, supplier spend allocation, ship to spend allocation and projected savings; an e-request-for-quote/request-for-information module that allows buyers, suppliers and other stakeholders to design and communicate RFQs electronically over the Internet, as well as bid analysis reports that allow buyers to analyze supplier bids within and across rounds to identify cost savings opportunities; and data integration capabilities that allow for easier upload of master and transactional data from disparate legacy systems into the ProcureMind database. Pierre Mitchell, a vice president for research at technology consultancy AMR Research has cited Plano, Texas-based MindFlow as a solution provider that is "leading the convergence of strategic sourcing and supply chain planning."