Lawson Expands Technology and Strategic Partnership with IBM to Focus on Key Vertical Markets in Germany
Companies to build on successful partnership to serve small and midsized businesses
ST. PAUL, MN .- Lawson Software (Nasdaq:LWSN) and IBM (NYSE:IBM) today announced an expansion of technology and reseller agreements to focus on small and midsize businesses (SMBs) in select industries in Germany. Under the expanded reseller agreement, IBM will co-design, sell and implement solutions based on Lawson’s enterprise software solutions specifically designed for the needs of SMBs in process manufacturing and retail. The agreement expands a North American resale agreement successfully launched earlier this year that focused on SMBs in banking and insurance and manufacturing firms in the fashion and food and beverage industries.
The existing technology and reseller partnership between the two companies has resulted in new contracts with multiple customers, including Germany-based Enia Carpet Group, along with many additional new business opportunities for Lawson and IBM. The new contracts underscore the value Lawson and IBM bring to customers by delivering enterprise software solutions on IBM hardware and software with support from IBM Global Services. The ongoing partnership between Lawson and IBM had already resulted in nearly 1,000 Lawson customers moving to the Lawson System Foundation solution running on IBM middleware.
Under the new agreement, IBM Global Business Services consultants will apply their knowledge of manufacturing and retail industries and midsize businesses to deliver industry solutions based on Lawson enterprise applications, which are designed to support these specific industry markets. Lawson will collaborate with IBM experts on hardware, software and sales to provide packaged solutions that solve critical business and technology issues for SMBs in these targeted industries.
“Like Lawson, IBM has a deep understanding of the issues and challenges for companies in the manufacturing and retail industries,” said Brian Sterrett, vice president of channels and partners for Lawson. “With the expansion of this agreement to one of our most important European markets, we are better positioned to bring the kind of product, sales and support that our customers in these industries need to be competitive and to grow in the global marketplace.”
Lawson’s overall strategic relationship with IBM dates back to 1975. The company has a long track record of success serving more than 3,000 joint customers with enterprise software solutions running on IBM middleware and hardware technology.
Enia Carpets selected Lawson and IBM as part of a long-term technology solution. “We decided on IBM and the Lawson M3 solution because this combination fits perfectly into our overall business strategy,” said Manfred Kirchherr, general manager of Enia Carpets Deutschland. “Complete functionality, the integration of all subsidiaries via multi unit coordination, the traceability function, and sufficient resources – together with the partnership with IBM, were all decisive factors for us. Internal business processes can now be simplified and made more efficient. We can also increase quality while targeting cost reduction and supporting our ambitious growth plans.”
According to leading IT analyst firm IDC, the worldwide SMB opportunity is $404 billion, with the mid-market alone representing roughly half the total.1 The expanded relationship between Lawson and IBM is designed to help the two companies reach more customers in the European SMB market by promoting both companies’ software and industry-specific expertise.
The expanded agreement is also focused on helping customers move to an open standards-based service-oriented architecture (SOA), which helps SMBs automate business processes with their customers, partners and suppliers. Lawson enterprise software applications are designed to work in conjunction with IBM’s hardware, software and services, including IBM WebSphere, DB2, Tivoli, System i, System p, System x and System z. In addition, IBM has a broad array of go-to-market and sales resources in place, including SMB-focused sales territory managers, providing a quick and efficient way to reach this client base.
IBM Global Business Services is also making two industry-specific Lawson solutions available to business partners and customers in North America to cater to the SMB market - IBM Express Food and Beverage Solution for Lawson M3 and IBM Express Fashion and Apparel Solution for Lawson M3. The solutions, based on the Lawson M3 product line, include required functionality pre-configured in the software to help support the unique required business processes of mid-market customers in the Food and Beverage and Fashion and Apparel industries. This is another step by the two companies to gain market share in the growing SMB market.
“SMBs need simpler, more powerful technology solutions that will help them compete and succeed in today’s competitive environment, but will also provide the power and scalability they need as they grow and expand their business footprint,” said Jim Corgel, general manager, IBM Developer Relations. “The solutions Lawson offers, coupled with IBM hardware, middleware and services are the right fit for companies in the specific markets that we are targeting with this expanded reseller agreement.”
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