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E.piphany, Inc. (EPNY) Message Board

  • erm4you erm4you Apr 18, 2001 9:29 PM Flag

    BBSW & KANA Merger...

    Does anyone have any DD on how this new entity products stack up against EPNY's offering?

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    • Good post.

      At the risk of showing what an idiot I am, this is a big part of the reason I invested in DTEC. Company out of Canada isn't going to get the press or the respect of a US firm.

      Nah; wasn't stupid. Just didn't work out.

    • Why would any company buy a Weblogic server and start developing their own application when there are all these successful packaged applications on the market (BVSN, VIGN, BLUE, ARTG, etc.)that will get you 75%-95% of the way there? - fine use your own p[eople to custom build what you need. Have you ever heard of time to market?

      If I am a CEO and my CTO/CIO came to me and tried to make a case to build I would say: "How much and how long and can our competitor buy a packaged application and gain an advantage?" I am afraid it would be the end of the conversation and possibly their job!

      The problem with BEAS trying to develop these applications (Content, Transactions, Communications across Marketing, Sales, and Service)is which market and partner do they go after or do they try and do it all? Tough problem don't you think? ATG has their own app server and packaged applications but they can't do it all either. If they thought they could why are they all partnering?

      What about the companies that are standardizing on other application servers: Websphere or Dynamo, etc. - do you write them off or try to get certified on your competitors servers?

      I think IBM has stated publically that they are going to steer clear of the software application market.

      Would you really rather buy BEA Campaign Manager vs. EPNY's product/platform or soon BBSW product on KANA's platform all running on a Weblogic server - doesn't it come down to what you are looking to do and who can best provide that capability? All applications are J2EE certified? Maybe it would be the best solution but not just because BEA built it!

      What were BEAS sales for 1st qtr of Campaign Manager?

      Thanks for the post.

    • In my opinion EPNY and KANA/BBSW are still dealing with visionaries and early adopters
      where this cutting edge technology and the capabilities it provides are understood. Siebel is
      dealing with the late majority where the emphasis is on features/functions/references - how many
      VPs of Customer Service or VPs of Sales do you think are calling up EPNY and asking to discuss
      their J2EE compliant architecture? - not many! (how many on this board even know the
      significance of this?) The battle is at the CIO or CTO level and is being won by EPNY and
      KANA/BBSW when they can get the right audience (not that many yet).

      The economic slowdown has hurt because these companies went gangbusters to get big fast to
      gain mindshare. They just didn't put on the brakes fast enough when they saw the yellow light but
      how many people on this board held on to their stock as it went in the toilet and never sold?

      The paradigm shift from a linear, polar orientation with the company managing the relationship to
      a nodal, web orientation where all stakeholders share the power (do you see the metaphor here as
      it pertains to client/server vs. internet architected?) will begin when you see Siebel starts using
      words like "customer-centric", "extended enterprise", and "enterprise relationship management"
      (have you read their marketing stuff lately?). You know it has arrived when Tom with his
      dictatorial, command and control management style (how can you buy a product from a company
      that doesn't walk the walk and talk the talk?) admits defeat and has to rebuild their product or
      buys a competitor. I think it will be too late!

      Should be interesting to see how BEAS, ARTG, BVSN and IBM (all "partners") get along under
      the new KANA/BBSW tent - they'll have to ask George W. for advise.

      EPNY and KANA/BBSW believe they can become the "Siebel" of this new space (we are dealing
      with some big egos remember) - usually one co. emerges as the dominant leader. There are others
      who believe the same thing: BEAS, ARTG, BVSN, VIGN, BLUE ultimately ONE or some
      combination(s) will live to take on SEBL and ORCL at the end.

      Who or which combination do you think makes the most sense?

    • The reason is the ASP model. Let business focus on what they're good at.

      These Application servers are good at acting as engines. They're far far back in the game for CRM applications. That's why they're not players.

      J2EE lets CRM firms focus on software and functionality and scalability. And not in the business of creating application server software.

      If someone had both... they'd dominate. That doesn't exist now. So the answer...

      Partnerships.... J2EE compliancy....

    • Guys,

      SEBL sacrificed a lot to put out that profit. They'll be taking a hit for many quarters to come. They knew that if they hit their numbers, their stock would stabilize because they have this illusion of immunity to the market slowdown.

      Watch SEBL drop...

      Here's some inside stats:

      My friend from PwC, one of the major implementors said this....
      One of Three SEBL projects fail.
      One of Two SEBL people actually use their SFA tool, the rest is shelfware.

      SEBL has plateaued for customers and isn't doing enought to harvest existing customers for revenue.

      I.e.... they may be okay now.... but as the year progresses they will fall.

      EPNY doesn't want to be bought. Read their 10-K. There's a few items put in by the board that makes an acquisition very cash intensive.

      Only boys that can buy this puppy is big blue... cisco.... oracle.... or the like.

      BBSW and KANA don't have enough cash. They'll burn a good amount dealing with the merger. They'll have to redesign to make a new product. That hurts the sales cycle. By the time they're ready to go to market, EPNY will have two new releases (WHICH ARE J2EE compliant!!!) They'll be gone by year's end too.

      Just my humble opinion.....

    • Everyone keeps raving about the fact that KANA and EPNY have a great J2EE enabled platform that enables customers to develop their own Java Apps. (And that SEBL don't).

      But these platforms don't run on their own, they require an application server such as BEAS WebLogic or IBM WebSphere. These companies have a massive hold on the J2EE developement market and are currently developing their own apps. that perform similar features to Kana's (BEAS Campaign Manager.

      Why are customers going to buy a Kana platform to develop J2EE products when it has to sit on a BEAS WebLogic server when they could easily develop their own apps. on the WebLogic server itself?!?

      Surely this points to a massive rise in Web Application Server sales (and BEAS stock price) and an acceleration in Application Server vendors developing their own killer apps.

      I would rather buy BEA Weblogic and BEA Campaign Manager than BEA WebLogic and Kana eBusiness Platform and Kana Connect Marketing to do the same thing.

      Any thoughts?

      Sorry if I have gone on a bit........

    • erm4you:
      Thanks for the post. I hope you don't mind if I ask a few more questions.

      Why do you think that EPNY and BBSW have had such a tough time of it lately and SEBL has been somewhat unscathed? Do you think the economic slowdown has delayed this transition from inward focused systems to J2EE and internet oriented systems?

      What is your take on the BBSW and BEAS relationship?

      I always wonder with EPNY and BBSW whether the real goal is to have a functioning company in the middle of 2002 that can be sold to a bigger guy. With BBSW and KANA there is the impression that many of the cuts are designed to make the two more attractive to a suitor.


    • I agree that the numbers look daunting vs. Siebel and for now it appears as no contest.

      But, both KANA/BBSW and EPNY have something that Siebel would die for (an open, flexible and scalable internet architected product)and are betting it WILL be an essential purchase in the future - relationship building via the web across the entire extended enterprise (forget e-mail this is going to be the killer app). Remember Siebel has been at this CRM game for a while now - before Al Gore invented the internet. Unfortunately how a company manages their relationship with their customer - is the wrong question for this new communication medium and as a result their product was never:

      a. designed to have the customer/partner/supply chain interact directly with it. Can't scale.

      b. designed to integrate other legacy systems to it (they want to "own" the data). Not Open.

      c. designed to work well with new communication channels of web, e-mail, chat, wireless, etc. Not flexible.

      Today's announcement of Siebel shutting down is an interesting development. What do they now do?

      1. try to pretend your product does what EPNY & KANA/BBSW can do? This only works for so long - your customers will eventually catch on!

      2. build a new product from scratch - how long would that take? Can you do it in full view of the rest of your company and risk the problems that would cause?

      3. buy another company that has the proper technology (J2EE) - would Tom ever admit he made such a big mistake?

      The big question in all of this is how do you get your cusomers from here to there? In my opinion the market will shift much faster than Siebel can react.

      Just one guy's opinion! Maybe Tom isn't scared - but do you think he has read my post?

    • Agree with your argument regarding the scale game, but I don't think KANA or EPNY want to remain independent in the long term. There are plenty of players that could buy them and provide the needed scale.

    • Big problem, when a company with market-cap under $150M (KANA) tries to take on the big gorilla at $20B (SEBL). In today's economy, CRM is not an essential purchase, and the only reason SEBL can survive is its size and diversity of product.

      Both Siboni and KANA/BBSW mgmt misjudged the execution capability of SEBL, and that at some point this becomes a scale game.

      You can't win the scale game, when every step you take forward, you have lay off half your employees, and figure out how to keep your good people.

      Long-term, KANA and EPNY are both in the toilet. I agree with your comments that EPNY should really trade at KANA/BBSW multiples - but Siboni does do a good job spinning a shabby story.

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