Whilst the recent merger of Consona and CDC Software may seem a natural consolidation, the deal raises some serious questions regarding the future of the company’s CRM offering.
That’s according to Ovum analyst Jeremy Cox who explains that Aptean, the company formed out of the partnership, will now have three CRM software applications in its stable: Onyx, Saratoga and Pivotal.
Following the merger, will these solutions continue independently or combine to form a new CRM platform, he asks.
Consona and CDC Software both have a history of extending their reach into specific industries – such as financial services, telecoms, energy and utilities, and education – through acquisitions in order to flesh out their end-to-end enterprise capabilities.
“On the upside, the merging of the two companies to create Aptean not only consolidates the companies’ positions in their core manufacturing and process industry verticals, but also offers the potential to add complementary capabilities, and increase the value to customers,” said Cox.
However, whilst such acquisitions may have boosted customer count over the years for Consona and CDC Software, the rise of Cloud-based CRM has made the market much more volatile, said the analyst.
“The inexorable rise of cloud-based CRM as an option would seem to play against Pivotal or Saratoga, with Onyx being the sole cloud deliverable offering within Aptean’s CRM software stable,” said Cox.
Whilst Monte Forde, Aptean’s President, said the company is “committed to protecting our customers’ software application investments”, there’s no clarity whether the firm’s R&D will be spread over its product portfolio or whether it refers to include a new Cloud-based option.
Cox concludes: “Any merger is bound to create some uncertainty in the market and among customers, and Ford is quite rightly focusing on the positives in these early days. However, if any enterprise or public sector organization is considering CRM offerings within the Aptean portfolio it would be wise to get answers to these questions.
Given the expertise of Consona and CDC Software at consolidating acquisitions, the portents are positive. If the right choices are made we could see the emergence of a new enterprise software powerhouse in the manufacturing, process, and distribution industries for mid-market sized companies.”