AddonSoftware® and GoldMine® have formed a strategic partnership bringing together two customer bases that each believes is fertile ground for each others software. In the announcement there is however little reason for customers of either to get excited about. Goldmine® has been around for over 25 years and now over 1,000,000 customers across 45 countries and AddonSoftware® developed by Basis international delivers a customisable ERP solution to business from small to enterprise size, in total they have a combined user base of 2,000,000 users. The two companies have been helped in forging this alliance by Phoenix Fire Inc a business development agency that helps to bring companies together with synergies on their customer bases and technology.
The disappointing thing in the announcement is that there is no real substance to any technology sharing, neither company list the other as a technology partner already and while both companies have cloud solutions there were no announcements around plans to integrate them.
Paul Yeomans, Vertical Market Manager of AddonSoftware commented “Both GoldMine and AddonSoftware are easy to use, feature rich and cost effective CRM and ERP applications. As cloud solutions they are managed applications, so additional technical skills are not required to use them…Companies can use these applications immediately, increasing their use as organizations grow.”
The same could be said of any other cloud based application, but without integration between them businesses are free to choose the best product for the job, the danger of choosing a completely unintegrated technology has recently been described as a Frankencloud by FinancialForce and one to avoid. The disappointing thing is that this could have been so much more positive an announcement. If the two companies had announced the intention to integrate their software, providing customers with a solution that met their ERP and CRM needs in a single cloud based solution then this would have been more newsworthy.
So why combine their ERP + CRM?
Paul Petersen, GM of GoldMine explains the reasons why both companies are choosing this path in saying: “The CRM and ERP markets have matured and are very crowded and competitive,” …. “Leveraging our combined history, expertise and customer base, we are poised to take market leadership and grow the future of CRM and ERP.”. While the first half of this statement may be true one suspects that the companies are under pressure to expand their customer base. No doubt both companies will be able to win some new customers with a joint approach that might actually reduce some of their sales and marketing costs, and at least give them greater reach. The acid test will be whether they are able to bridge the two pieces of software successfully and how this strategic partnership will develop. Remaining separate is likely to see both fail in the long term as companies are looking for utility software that they can expand as their business grows with the additional ERP or CRM functionality. It will be interesting to see what is announced next and whether the companies have a roadmap for success.