Compaq and Lotus forge KM agreement
This week Lotus deepened its commitment to the knowledge management space with the first hardware/software alliance in the market. Compaq and Lotus will deliver two applications Cipher Systems' Knowledge.Works competitive analysis software and GlobalServe's ResearchAccelerator, a collaboration tool for R&D organizations on the Domino/Notes platform with Compaq/NT hardware. Other applications for messaging, ERP, and specific vertical market apps are "in the pipeline" for release later this year.
The deal brings the huge marketing and sales clout of big-name IT vendors into the emerging knowledge management market, pegged by analysts as a $5 billion software/services market by the end of this year. "We look at knowledge management as being at the cusp of what's taking off in the market," said Mary Christ, director of product marketing for Compaq's Internet solutions business unit.
Delphi Group analysts applaud the deal, which they believe underscores the turnkey-like nature of the knowledge apps that Lotus is promoting, but they caution that this isn't a strategic move, nor does it address a critical pain point of knowledge management systems (i.e. hardware). "The real strength of the offerings come with the bundling of knowledge management software that promotes the leveraging of collective wisdom in targeted vertical applications," according to Delphi.