Cordys Asia assistant V-P Ravi Vedantam is confident that the company's business collaboration platform will have many takers in India
Hyderabad: The talking point of Cordys, part of the Vanenburg group, a Netherlands-based group of businesses, is its 'Beyond ERP' business premise. The company has about twenty clients worldwide for its platform, called the Cordys Business Collaboration Platform (BCP). Cordys Asia is at present in talks with a number of Indian companies for the implementation of BCP.
According to the company, BCP leverages the combined functionality of Web services-based application development platform and integration middleware, workflow modeller, business rules engine, and a portal-based management toolkit. This helps organisations to extend and modernise their legacy applications, including ERP systems, and at the same time improve the utilisation of the investments made in the existing technology infrastructure.
The company feels that over the past two decades, manufacturing companies have made extensive investments in ERP (enterprise resource planning) and other software solutions that have helped automate processes, increase efficiencies and improve insight into mission-critical data.
Although the benefits have been substantial, companies have been continuously challenged to maximise the availability of their data, and explore new and better ways to achieve collaboration within their trading community. By easing access to the data and providing an environment where the data can be shared with suppliers and customers, companies are now better positioned to operate 'Real-Time' and to be lean, agile and competitive.
Ravi Vedantam, assistant vice-president, Cordys Asia, has more than 10 years' experience in the IT industry having worked for four years in Tata Infotech and two years with Microland Computers. He has his core competencies in sales, business development and relationship management. He has also worked in the US for three years. In an interview with domain-b, Vedantam talks about the prospects of the company in India. Excerpts:
What is 'Beyond ERP' that Cordys is offering?
Beyond ERP helps companies break the barrier of time and location in operating a business. Beyond ERP, or ERI II, which goes by many names, lets the enterprise and its customers and partners work in real time across heterogeneous environments and across public and private networks to get needed information to the right person or application.
The term real-time focuses on speed at which information becomes available. When all constituents of the extended enterprise are armed with data in real time, latency among automated IT systems and human decision-makers is virtually eliminated. This takes time out of operations, reduces inefficiency and increases the velocity of business.
Real-Time Enterprises (RTE) will be the norm by 2008. By then most companies will have converted their current collection of batch processing and near real-time information systems to super speedy 'just in time' processes. The key challenge to reducing the data access time is to create effective connections between organisations and access enterprises. In that context Web services has a significant role to play.
Cordys recommends a four-point programme to all companies that aspire to gain a competitive advantage by jump-starting an RTE transformation:
1. Extend the enterprise architecture to an Internet infrastructure base;
2. Develop Web services capabilities and implement service-oriented architecture;
3. Develop capabilities to define and manage workflow and business process; and
4. Deploy application integration middleware.
When you achieve the above enterprises will have enterprise architecture, which will be 'push'-based rather than 'pull'-based.
How does Cordys Asia perceive the Indian market for its products in terms of potential?
Most Indian companies including mid-sized enterprises have implemented some form of enterprise application (packaged ERP or custom-built solutions) to automate and integrate the operations within the enterprise. In order to compete globally they now have to seek ways to improve efficiency across their entire value chain.
Considering the fact that most of the current enterprise applications are constrained by technology and design to offer such capabilities, enterprises have to look at new technologies to address this issue. We at Cordys feel that there is a significant potential in the market for our BCP as it is based on cutting-edge Web services technology and designed to address the pain points that Indian enterprises are currently facing.
What has been the response of Indian companies to Cordys' RTE?
Indian companies have realised the need to look at ways of giving customers and partners access to scheduling, delivery, inventory, manufacturing, invoicing, and planning information. Indian manufacturing product and service companies have shown a keen interest in utilising the Cordys BCP to extend the capabilities of their enterprise applications to customers and partners along their value chain.
They are also enthused by the fact that Cordys solutions can be deployed incrementally, thus avoiding huge up-front investments and big-bang implementations. Moreover, Cordys has an open architecture, which can seamlessly integrate with the existing IT infrastructure and thus helps companies leverage their existing IT investments.
Which sectors are likely to interest Cordys Asia for its BCP?
Manufacturing is the strength of the Cordys organisation. Hence we are currently focused on manufacturing industries. But we are also trying to create interest in some BPO [business process outsourcing] companies for Cordys BCP.
What is the size of investment made by Cordys in India?
The parent company of Cordys Asia [Vanenburg group] is one of the largest European investors in India. The Hyderabad-based Vanenburg IT Park owned by the Vanenburg group is one of the largest IT investments in the country.
What are the future plans of Cordys in India in terms of business expansion?
Cordys Asia is currently focused on the Indian market and is also expanding its operations to the Middle East. It is looking for partners in other Asian markets. However, in India, our focus will be primarily in manufacturing and in BPO to start with. Starting next year, we will be focusing on industry verticals like banking and financial services.