Sage Software Acquires Mobile CRM Provider

Sage Software, the U.S. subsidiary of UK parent Sage Group, has acquired Corum Corporation, aprivately held software consulting and developmentcompany that specializes in mobile CRM technology.

Sage has partnered with Corum for several years,integrating the Canada-based firm’s mobile platformwith the SalesLogix mobile sales and field serviceautomation products that are available in the NorthAmerican markets.

With Corum folded into Sage, the latter company will be ableto expand upon the Corum product’s functionality and deploy itglobally, Dave Batt, senior vice president and generalmanager of Global CRM for the Sage Group, toldCRM Buyer.

Sage plans on introducing Corum’s functionality inother markets in Europe and Asia. It will be easier to mount a globalcampaign for a Sage product than for a product offeredby an ISV (independent software vendor) partner, Batt noted.

Eventually, Sage will extend Corum as amobility platform across multiple product lines — including ACT, Sage CRM and SageCRM.com — rather than limiting it to the Saleslogix family. “Itwill be ubiquitous across Sage,” he said, although othermobility offerings will remain available.

BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Palm

“This acquisition provides a path to enhance ourbest-of-breed client access environments for Sage CRMSalesLogix,” said Elvin Monteleone, SageSoftware senior vice president and general manager forSage CRM Solutions. Corum’s platform supports most wireless devices,among them RIM’s BlackBerry line and devices that run on Microsoft Windows Mobile, including some Palm products.

“We have noted a significantgrowth of interest in mobile CRM in our customer basein North America, and in conversations with ourpartners and prospective customers,” he added.

Growing Demand

After many false starts by vendors — as well as weakerthan expected demand over theyears — it appears that mobile CRM is now poised forwider adoption. Forty-seven percent of organizations polled in a recent survey by the Aberdeen Group indicated they planned to expand use of mobile CRM technology within the next six months.

The mobile enterprise market in North America is set toreach US$7.4 billion in revenues by 2012 from $642.2million today, according to a separate study by Frost & Sullivan. There are 55 million mobile workers inNorth America, a figure that translates into approximately 45percent of the total workforce, the study notes.

“An out-of-office mobile enterprise solution ispivotal in today’s competitive business environmentdue to the large on-field/traveling workforce,”observes Frost & Sullivan Industry Analyst SamirSakpal. “Mobile enterprise technologies, coupled withrobust applications, can help ensure thatorganizations are able to maximize customersatisfaction at a reduced total cost, thus generatingpositive revenue and profitability figures.”

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