Siebel E-Business Apps Now Offered on AS/400

AS/400 users will gain access to another line of market-leading e-business applications, when Siebel Systems begins offering support for AS/400 with the next release of its products, expected late this year.

The announcement by Siebel Systems is the latest development in its relationship with IBM, stemming from a strategic marketing and sales alliance the two companies forged last year.

For Siebel, the extension of the relationship with IBM to include support for AS/400 gives them a foothold in the midsize business market.
“This AS/400 announcement is just an extension of that announcement,” says Mark Wulf, CRM solution manager for Partnerworld for Developers, AS/400.

For Siebel, the extension of the relationship with IBM to include support for AS/400 gives them a foothold in the mid-size business market, where Siebel has not been strongly competitive before now.

“Our relationship with IBM is incredibly important to us and incredibly strategic, even before this announcement,” says George Ahn, Siebel general manger for mid-market products. “When you think of the typical AS/400 user, they’re a small to medium business. These customers aren’t simple customers, they’re just smaller. They still need the technology, but they also don’t have IT staffs of 500. And that’s where AS/400 is a perfect fit. With Siebel, it’s just a perfect marriage, and that’s why we’re so excited about this relationship.”

According to Wulf, “we saw incredible demand right off the bat” for the new applications on AS/400. In order to facilitate the switch to Siebel on AS/400 for existing customers, IBM and Siebel have laid out a migration plan through which customers can deploy Siebel’s e-business applications on IBM’s DB2 Universal Database for NT, and then move to AS/400 quickly and with no upgrade costs when the new applications become available.

Wulf says he believes many customers will find it beneficial or even necessary to carry out this migration once the applications are released for AS/400, in order to guarantee scalability.

“Their initial implementation will be pilot size, then they’ll need to move to the AS/400 to get the scalability,” he says.

For customers who may already be using Siebel products on a different platform, Wulf says reliability, scalability and performance are the major advantages to be gained from running Siebel’s software on their AS/400. But beyond those often-touted benefits of the platform, there are specific advantages which should be considered by current AS/400 users who may not have ever used Siebel before.

“The features that our customers are looking for, you can get them from other vendors, but you can’t get them all from the same vendor,” Wulf says. “Because this Siebel solution is so broad, it really eliminates some of the need for our customers to buy a lot of those point solutions.”

Ahn agreed with that characterization of Siebel’s value proposition. More than just convincing existing Siebel customers to migrate their existing applications to the AS/400 from another platform, Ahn says his company believes their expanded platform support will expand their customer base by encouraging new customers who are using AS/400 to take a second look at Siebel’s products.

“In this space there are a lot of vendors who produce these point solutions – they may have a solution that’s great for the Web – but we offer the total solution, and that’s our value,” says Ahn. “I think the AS/400 users are going to be delighted to have these leading e-business applications.”

Related Information:

  • Siebel Systems (new window)
  • IBM AS/400 E-Business Page (new window)