I went to Collaborate 2010 with constrained expectations. I wondered aloud to my colleagues on the way out about customers that might be participating. Would attendance be up or down? Would the venue distract from the value of the conference? I would say I heavily managed my own expectations. It turns out my concerns were unfounded.
I was surprised by an assortment of factors. Several of our customers actually made it out to Collaborate. We were able to take time with them at dinner throughout the week as well as meet with them during the day between sessions. I had several discussions with friends and competitors about overall market consolidation and industry status quo. I was also impressed with the ingenuity and fervor with which customers are applying new releases in the areas of WebCenter Framework, WebCenter Spaces, IPM and IRM.
The Industry of Enterprise Content Management as a whole has been very busy in the last few years. Several software manufacturers have been gobbled up and you can read scads of articles on the internet full of opinions about market consolidation. If you are a frequent reader here you know that the one affecting us the most is Oracle’s acquisition of Stellent. Despite that focus, we still have to continually be aware of the rest of the market. You may remember that Autonomy bought Interwoven, EMC bought Documentum and Open Text bought Vignette just to name a few.
Software Manufacturers are not the only ones consolidating. Have you checked in with your Systems Integrator lately? Times are changing. Over in Indiana Front Line Logic was acquired by our friends at TEAM Informatics. Just this week, at Collaborate 2010, Bex Huff and Jason Clarkin announced the merger of Bezzotech and ImplementRAdvantage. As these and other potential events unfold your choices may dwindle. However, I believe the quality of options will remain high.
During all this activity Oracle is certainly not holding still. Out at the AIIM Conference (held the same week as Collaborate) Oracle won the Content Management Product of the Year Award. And one of our good friends, Brian Dirking, won a prestigious Distinguished Service Award.