A new road map for vendor Peregrine Systems

With the sale of its Remedy service management and support software unit now completed, vendor Peregrine Systems Inc. is busy reassuring customers about its new focus and future plans.

The Remedy sale was made to BMC Software Inc. for US$355 million as part of the San Diego-based infrastructure management software vendor's Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization in September.

In addition to the financial reorganization, the company has been the subject of an accounting investigation since May into alleged financial irregularities and is enmeshed in a lawsuit against its former accounting company, Arthur Andersen LLP.

Now, the company is trying to let customers know that it's ready to move forward as it recovers its balance and continues to offer wares to clients, according to Nicole Eagan, Peregrine's senior vice president of marketing.

The Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization is "in many ways a new lease on life" for the 20-year-old company, Eagan said. "We're going to emerge a stronger company on the other side."

The sale of the Remedy division, rather than being a negative for Peregrine, is a sign of the changing technology market, she said. Remedy is a tool kit that allows IT workers to build custom service management and support applications for their companies. But as tech staffs have been shrinking, the demand has shifted away from in-house custom application building, she said.

"The market's come full circle, and people are looking for out-of-the-box applications they can get up and running quickly," with a visible return on investment, Eagan said. Tool-kit software isn't needed today because IT staffs aren't in place in many companies now to do that kind of work, she said.

"What we've done is sharpen our focus by divesting assets that weren't part of our core business," she said.

Peregrine continues to sell its existing flagship lines, including ServiceCenter service management software and AssetCenter corporate asset tracking software, to its 3,500 established customers, which are large enterprises with more than 1,000 employees.

"We have a focus, and we're doing well," Eagan said. "What's hard for people to realize is we have a great and loyal customer base. Our customers are our best cheerleaders. They're rooting for us."

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