ThoughtWeb trumpets debut "intelligent" KM solution

Local knowledge management (KM) software start-up, ThoughtWeb, will hit the corporate sector later this year with its "intelligent agent technology," following an $A1.8 million bout of capital-raising from personal investors.

Former MD of global consulting firm McKinsey and Co, Rob McLean, has a personal stake in the start-up. However, Thoughtweb spokespeople declined to disclose details on his investment.

The collaboration tool specialist's global growth efforts will rest on debut product, ThoughtWeb's Electronic Personal Advisor (e-PA) software.

ThoughtWeb's CEO Chris Murray claimed the company would fill the void in what he labelled a "loosely-defined and disappointing" KM market.

"There's a lot of confusion about KM products and what they can actually deliver," he said. "There's also a fair bit of disappointment when organisations find that KM products they've implemented are only solvingpart of the problem."Thoughtweb's first release provides multi-functional data storage for document and project management, collaboration and workflow, for instance.

The "free-thinking" web-based application acts on behalf of the user to "proactively" collect, compile and present information, and create knowledge relevant to that user, according to a company statement.e-PA will boost organisations' efficiency levels by aligning the goals of the CEO to the accounts clerk with that of the whole enterprise, said Murray.

"ThoughtWeb…makes people more effective in their day to day roles, generating a constant flow of up-to-the-minute information, ideas and knowledge around an organisation.""ThoughtWeb understands the business context and helps people to prioritise properly and take the right actions at the right time from a company or organisational perspective, not just their own individual viewpoint."The start-up will capitalise on the communication-rich corporate and government sectors, namely medium to large organisations, which Murray said held the most complex relationships between people, projects, processes and business units.

ThoughtWeb's partner and reseller strategy will lie in developing marketing and technology alliances with large management consultancies, large systems integrators and solution-providers, as opposed to a hard-sell approach, Murray said.

ThoughtWeb plans to integrate its products with IBM or Microsoft's KM and database tools, not compete with their offerings, he said.

The US Department of Energy's Sandia National Laboratories has given ThoughWeb's first KM release the nod, choosing the e-PA for its Integrated Information Systems Division after a successful $US1 million pilot.

ThoughWeb is developing reference sites with large Australian businesses from the financial services, retail, manufacturing and management consulting industries, said Murray. It will launch a second round of capital-raising in October for $A8million, focusing on local and US venture-capitalists.

Licensing fees for the e-PA (configuration and support not included) cost around $A10 per unit per month, depending on the size and complexity of the organisation.

The company will release its first range of browser-based products later this year.

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