Sunday, April 17, 2005

Eviscerating Microsoft Business Solutions

The award for best repeated use of the word eviscerate goes

to... Stewart McKie for his post "Green" is a Smokescreen. Snippet:

The portfolio of software assets that Microsoft acquired and assembled into Microsoft Business Solutions (including Axapta, FRx, Great Plains, MS CRM, Navision, and Solomon) are experiencing a slow evisceration. It's the kind of process that only Microsoft, with its deep cash reserves and 'long game' approach to the market, could stomach. In order to understand why Microsoft would disembowel these assets, it helps to understand the dynamics of today's ERP market.

(damn creepy writing, man.)

The main point I take out of this article is that Microsoft's business solutions (curious acquisitions that haven't paid off except for buying a

customer base) are going to be slowly eviscerated (and served with fava beans and a nice Chianti, I guess) in favor of moving all of those solutions over to an Office System platform.

Making Office a platform is a done deal and seems to be the chosen evolutionary path of the group, end-user features be damned. I hope there's a level of platform indirection here because otherwise customers and partners are going to find themselves so incredibly tightly coupled with a particular release of Office System (along with its quirks and bugs) that there is absolutely positively no way they'll ever upgrade either the Office or the OS.



Anonymous said...

Being apart of the MBS div, I find this hard to swallow. Tight integration is still the rule of the day, but Office as a platform for an ERP system? Not likely. Infopath as a data entry tool works only as an extension, not a primary mechanism. Using Outlook, as described in the article, has a lot of merit, though. As does relying heavily on Excel--but that's just listening to the customers. More like: Green (whatever that is) will integrate, leverage and extend an Office platform.

Anonymous said...

"More like: Green (whatever that is) will integrate, leverage and extend an Office platform"

It's interesting that with no/limited Office integration, and SAP are growing by leaps and bounds. Meanwhile, bus solutions revenue is flat and and we're forced to talk about how great it's going to be once we integrate fully with Office. Once again, we take a business with enormous potential and totally screw it up to try and protect an existing cash cow.