IBM has broadened its offering into the mid-market financial and business processing software arena with the launch of the Axapta Business Management Solution last week.
Axapta is being pitched as an object-orientated business management solution for small and medium sized companies that want to tailor applications to their own requirements using the bundled tool, MorphX.
The vendor already has two offerings for this market but denies the three products clash. The others include Concord, a business management software package developed jointly with Damgaard, the same software house that developed Axapta, and the San Francisco project, a development framework of reusable objects such as accounts payable and accounts receivable for in-house developers to mould into tailored business management applications.
IBM announced last week a euro-compliant upgrade for San Francisco accounts payable and accounts receivable modules. San Francisco 1.3 now support Sun Solaris, HP-UX and Siemens Reliant Unix. Original platforms were AIX, Windows NT and OS/400.
A major drawback to the San Francisco project has been its failure to meet the widely accepted Enterprise Java Beans (EJB) standard, due to development starting on the project long before the standard was set in stone. IBM claims the project "is converging to support the EJB programming model".
IBM will announce an update for Concord for euro compliance and will also receive a Windows interface.
Paul Heathfield, Axapta marketing manager, explained that Axapta had been written in objects from the start rather than adapted to object-orientated computing as the older Concord product, also developed in conjunction with Danish company Damgaard, had been.
The UK release of Axapta follows a launch in the US in March, where Concord was never released and an April release in Denmark. Heathfield claimed that the introduction of Axapta in Denmark did not effect Concord sales.
Axapta is available in five different configurations, the financial series, trade series, logistics series, production series and project series.
The initial release of Axapta will be on NT ported to Oracle, Sybase and DB2 databases. There are plans for Unix versions.
IBM was unable to say whether there is an EJB issue with Axapta.
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