Pivotal partners with Intel on CRM

Pivotal on Wednesday joined forces with chipmaker Intel to boost the Pivotal Demand Chain Management CRM (customer relationship management) suite on Intel architectures via testing and optimization services.

Customers deploying Pivotal's product on Intel-based systems will have the opportunity to have specific environments replicated to test and optimize the performance of the suite, according to the companies. The companies also are emphasizing compatability with Microsoft Corp.'s .NET Enterrprise Server software platform.

A goal of the joint effort is to promote Pivotal's offering on the Intel platform over rival architectures, particularly the Sun Microsystems Inc. Sparc platform, according to Pivotal officials. The companies will work to defeat the "Intel architecture bigotry," said John Powers, president of global alliance development at Pivotal, in Kirkland, Washington. Some companies, he said, "believe the Sun mantra" concerning reliability and scalability, Powers said.

The bottom line, said Matt Duncan, Pivotal vice president of corporate solutions marketing, is that Intel has stepped up to the plate and "is taking aim directly at Sun and the other options out there for running your business."

Pivotal's Demand Chain Management platform features applications for e-business, data analysis, partner relationship management, and partner and customer hubs.

A customer's IT infrastructure, including firewalls, legacy systems, and satellite systems, will be simulated at a nearby Intel Solution Center. The intention is to simulate real-world conditions and stress test prior to deployment of Pivotal's applications. This is intended to mitigate risk for customers and ensure fast business results, according to Pivotal.

A Pivotal user said the platform offered strong compatibility with Microsoft software.

"We were looking for the best Microsoft tool we could find," said Jim Greufe, CRM implementation director at Farm Credit Services, in Omaha, Nebraska.

Pivotal was selected because it was consistent with in-house tools and integrated with them, it enabled employees to share data, and it supported a mobile sales environment, Greufe said.

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