Computer Associates Wades into CRM

Computer Associates International will unveil a CRM (customer relationship management) initiative later this month, a key official said Tuesday, but the move shouldn't be interpreted as CA's "entry" into the CRM space.

At the CRM Expo in San Francisco, Oct. 24 through Oct. 26, CA will announce new products that will be blended with existing offerings that leverage the Islandia, N.Y.-based company's Neugents analytical technology and Jasmine ii e-business platform, according to CA Senior Vice President Jacob Lamm.

"CRM has been evolving from the sales force automation world, help desk, and call centers to more collaborative CRM," Lamm said. "The industry has moved now toward a more analytical area -- data mining, real-time analysis, one-to-one marketing -- and we have been in the analytical space for a long time. CRM is shifting to what our strength is."

But if the CRM market has evolved to CA's strengths, the software maker also has moved to meet the market.

A month ago, for example, CA inked a partnership with wireless and Internet-based CRM vendor eWare to offer the Dublin, Ireland-based company's sales and marketing module in CA's suite, under the brand name "Sales and Marketing."

CA's CRM suite will include familiar as well as new tools, Lamm said, and will be geared "toward the higher end of the market, because our strength in analytics is much more value to large corporations."

"We want to be operational, analytical, and collaborative," Lamm said. "We're not coming to market with just another suite of CRM components. What we're doing is embedding intelligence into each one of these tools."

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