After 11 months of behind the scenes work, CEO Charles Phillips and the Infor management team unveiled the launch of Infor 10 in New York City on September 13, 2011, to customers, industry analysts, media, and investment analysts. The new Infor has kept busy with key management team hires, the $1.84 B acquisition of Lawson, the launch of Infor10 CloudSuite, and partnerships in CRM with Salesforce.com via Inforce.
Infor currently serves more than 75,000 customers in 164 countries. With combined revenues greater han $2.5B, Infor/Lawson is the third largest enterprise apps company. The Infor and Lawson combination brings deep industry presence in key industries such as aerospace, automotive, chemical, distribution, equipment service maintenance repair (ESMR), fashion, food and beverage, general manufacturing, healthcare, high-tech, hospitality, high tech, industrial equipment and machinery, industrial manufacturing, and public sector.
Key announcements from the September 13th launch event include:
- Reintroducing ION as the ‘the heart of Infor10. Infor’s lightweight middleware solution provides an integration tool for Infor and non-Infor applications. The intent is to provide devices such as desktops, tablets, and other mobile devices to gain access to information in existing applications. Key components behind the technology infrastructure include a common user interface, workspace, reporting and analytics, workflow, event management, master data management, localizations, mobility enablement, and packaged integration.
Point of View (POV): Unlike Oracle and SAP who have spent billions addressing the integration problem through a comprehensive and heavy middleware strategy, ION take a more pragmatic approach. Through loose coupling, Ion gives the Infor family of products increased agility that matches use cases for a mobile, social, and analytical world. While ION aims to provide better integration, streamlined workflows and end to end business process integration, Constellation believes it will take at least 6 to 9 months before the first set of end to end processes span across the major product lines (e.g. Infor10 ERP Enterprise (LN) and Infor 10 Lawson M3). The good news – Integration between Infor10 Lawson S3 and Infor EAM is planned for November, just 100 days after acquisition.
On the management team side, customers and prospects will be reassured that both Infor’s second employee, Soma Somasundaram, senior vice president of Global Product Development and Dean Hager (i.e. originally from Lawson) remain key driving forces for carrying out this completed vision.
Figure 1. ION Plays A Key Role In Infor’s Long Term Strategy
- Delivering a consumer grade experience. Duncan Algove, President of Products and Support introduced Infor10 Workspace. With an intention of bringing consumer world experiences to the enterprise, Infor10 WorkSpace provides a fresh start to helping users “work the way they live”. Key elements of the ION experience include role-based screens, role-based workflows, in-context business intelligence, event management, activity streams, tasks and alerts, and consumer-like search capabilities).
POV: Existing customers and new prospects expect next generation applications to meet the Six S’s of Enterprise Class Consumerization of IT. Infor’s key design principles of flipping the structure of work to be data and event driven, contextual data at the point of decision, social computing metaphors, and design for mobile play a key role in making this a reality for Infor customers. This provides a compelling reason for customers to put their maintenance fees to use in an upgrade or purchase of Infor10 components.
Figure 2. Scenes From The New Infor User Experience