Japan-US Business Report Logo

No. 359, August 1999

Issue Index aaaaa 1999 Archive Index aaaa Subscriber Area

American Companies in Japan


Although it began as a simple Web-friendly data base, ORACLE CORP.'s WebDB has evolved into a Web-site construction and content generation/access tool. The $2,000 2.1 revision allows users to create and post their own information to the Internet or corporate intranet, creating a dynamic, data-driven site. As WebDB resides on the server, the only other software a client needs to create and access WebDB content is a Web browser. WebDB administrators have full control over users' access rights to post material and can enforce style rules on content through templates.

Palo Alto, California-based SENTIUS CORP. has formed an alliance with LOTUS DEVELOPMENT CORP.'s local arm and CSI CORP. to localize, market and support its RichLink Automate Web content annotation technology. The software allows content authors to embed in on-line documents pop-up windows that can contain multilanguage translations, word definitions, hyperlinks and images. Lotus will handle the $14,200 RichLink Automate for Domino, while CSI — a joint venture of IBM JAPAN LTD. and CSK CORP. — will support the Windows NT version, which lists for $16,700.

An extremely Japan-active E-PARCEL, LLC has teamed with HAKUHODO INC., the country's number-two advertising agency, and TOYOTA TSUSHO CORP. to form a company to distribute digitized content, such as e-magazines, e-comics, art and animations. INDIVISIO INC. is built on Hakuhodo's spun-off e-STAGE Franken business, whose automatic digital content delivery system is powered by e-Parcel software (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No. 358, July 1999, p. 26). Hakuhodo and Toyota Tsusho also invested money in the new Tokyo company. Newton, Massachusetts e-Parcel will continue to handle most technical aspects of the operation, while its partners focus on content development and marketing.

TOPPAN PRINTING CO., LTD. is leading a rival consortium of IBM JAPAN LTD., the subsidiaries of INTEL CORP. and SUN MICROSYSTEMS, INC. and INTERNET INITIATIVE JAPAN INC. into the electronic content distribution market. The five will create and operate a network of servers under the Bitway brand for delivering digital content on a per transaction fee basis. This saves content providers the cost and the time of developing their own distribution channels. It also gives them instant access to a large customer base and ensures that they will be using state-of-the-art distribution technology. Commercial service in Japan is slated for the fall, but Toppan Printing plans to take the business global by 2001.

To feed the appetite of Japanese investors for reliable and detailed financial information, STANDARD & POOR'S CORP. has opened a Web site just for them. Entirely in Japanese, the site presents credit ratings as well as analytical research reports on companies and industries. It also provides links to S&P's Tokyo and international staffs as well as to related financial information Web pages.

Although it only has been in operation for five months (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No. 355, April 1999, p. 25), CYBERCASH, INC.'s subsidiary has teamed with BUNKA ORIENT CORP. to offer e-commerce consulting and Web-site construction services. The alliance pairs the Reston, Virginia firm's secure electronic settlement system with Bunka Orient's Web-site building experience. The two already have lined up their first job: building an on-line bookstore for Tokyo-based SHOEISHA CO., LTD.

A new offering from HEWLETT-PACKARD JAPAN LTD. and BROADVISION INC. combines Internet-based marketing with personalized customer relationship management technology. HP Japan will prein-stall the Redwood City, California firm's One-To-One Enterprise package on its servers, bundled with a full e-commerce suite. One of the first users of this hardware/software combination is DLJDIRECT SFG SECURITIES INC., an Internet discount broker (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No. 355, April 1999, p. 18). DLJDirect clients automatically have their personal account information displayed when they log onto the company's Web site. HEWLETT- PACKARD SOLUTIONS DELIVERY LTD. is handling marketing to other companies.

NET PERCEPTIONS, INC. has enlisted some heavyweight talent to launch a joint venture to localize, market and support its e-commerce personalization software. With the help of TRANS COSMOS INC. (40 percent), NTT SOFTWARE CORP. (10 percent) and TOYO INFORMATION SYSTEMS CO., LTD. (5 percent), the Minneapolis company's subsidiary will take over all training and after-sale support functions — duties previously handled in the United States. Net Perceptions' software tracks on- line shopping habits and preferences, allowing e-merchants to build personal relationships and tailor product offerings to an individual's tastes. One of Japan's top office-supply vendors, ASKUL K.K., already has deployed the personalization software at its Web site.

In the same vein, software from AURIC WEB SYSTEMS, INC. allows Internet services providers to track the Web-surfing behavior of their clients and then automatically deliver advertising keyed to their preferences. Thus, as people reveal their interests by visiting certain kinds of Web sites, the Pasadena, California firm's ATLAS (auto- targeted live advertising system) will throw up separate windows on the user's monitor displaying ads for related products. To penetrate the rapidly growing Japanese Internet market, Auric Web Systems formed an equally held ISP venture with NIHON TELENET CO., LTD. that will offer free connection services to consumers and generate revenues by selling advertising.

With wireless Internet surfing all the rage in Japan, two of the country's biggest cellular services providers, DDI CORP. and NIPPON IDOU TSUSHIN CORP., as well as HITACHI, LTD. have licensed a wireless Internet services platform from PHONE.COM, INC. The Redwood City, California firm's UP.Link Server Suite powers DDI's EZweb and IDO's EZaccess services, which include e-mail, information channels and Web- based personal information management services. These services can be accessed via Hitachi's C201H cdmaOne-protocol handsets, which use Phone.com's UP.Browser micro Web browser. .....Separately, PHONE.COM, INC. authorized ITOCHU TECHNO- SCIENCE CORP. to resell its UP.Link wireless Internet services platform. The distributor will provide localized installation, developer training, marketing, sales and technical support for the UP.Link Server Suite and the UP.SDK software development kit.

With demand for Internet bandwidth exploding, HARRIS & JEFFRIES, INC. introduced a high-speed data-transmission software that complies with Multiprotocol Label Switching, an advanced data traffic management protocol set by the Internet Engineering Taskforce. Distributed by NISSHO ELECTRONICS CORP. and DENSAN CO., LTD., the Dedham, Massachusetts company's Label Traffic Control System enables ISPs to increase their service capacities by making their switches and routers operate much more efficiently than current protocols allow. A LTCS license costs roughly $333,300 a year. For its part, Nissho Electronics hopes to sell up to 30 licenses and generate $10 million in revenues over three years.

To expand its sales to ISPs, San Mateo, California-based INKTOMI CORP. opened a wholly owned subsidiary. The new unit will work with distributors ITOCHU TECHNO- SCIENCE CORP. and TRANS COSMOS INC. (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No. 352, January 1999, p. 20) to promote the newest edition of Inktomi's network caching package. Traffic Server 3.0, which costs $43,300 per server processor, speeds both uploads and downloads by dynamically storing content on demand.

An Internet server security product from C2NET SOFTWARE, INC. is on the market through Tokyo's INTEGRATED SYSTEMS TECHNOLOGIES, INC. Priced between $1,300 and $1,700, Stronghold Secure Web Server is based on the popular open- source Apache Web server, but it adds a full array of security protocols and management tools. Encryption keys from 40 bits to 128 bits are user-selectable. The latest version of Oakland, California C2Net's Stronghold supports Global Server IDs to prevent spoofing and Internet fraud.


In a big win for the Seattle company, WATCHGUARD TECHNOLOGIES, INC. sold its LiveSecurity for Managed Security Services to INTERNET INITIATIVE JAPAN INC. to handle all security-related functions for the major ISP. LiveSecurity for MSS can monitor, configure and update the Internet security privileges of thousands of customers from an ISP's central operations console. IIJ expects that this will appeal to companies interested in outsourcing all of their ISP needs, including intranet, Internet and extranet security. It expects to launch its managed security service during the fourth quarter.

As part of a major push into global markets, fellow Seattle software developer AVENTAIL CORP. signed up NICHIMEN DATA SYSTEMS CORP. to distribute its products. NDS will promote and support Aventail ExtraNet Center to corporate customers looking for a turnkey yet secure extranet solution. With ExtraNet Center prices starting at $20,700, the new distributor hopes to sell $20.8 million worth of Aventail software and related services over the next three years.

Another product aimed at securing corporate data transmitted over the Internet from prying eyes comes from Waltham, Massachusetts-based AUTHENTICA SECURITY TECHNOLOGIES, INC. PageVault is a fully exportable client-server application that uses 128-bit RC4 encryption and Internet standards to protect digital information wherever it goes. DIT CO., LTD. and MARUBENI SOLUTIONS CORP. are managing distribution and support for PageVault, which costs $8,200 and up for a basic license.

The world leader in the field of digital document authentication signed an exclusive distribution agreement with NTT DATA CORP. The on-line Digital Notary Service from SURETY.COM not only puts a timestamp on digital documents and other information. It also reassures recipients that the information has not been tampered with, thanks to the unique digital "fingerprint" that it creates. The service protects individual files as well as entire archives. The three-year deal, which also covers other parts of Asia, could be worth more than $4 million to Reston, Virginia-based Surety.com. NTT Data expects to launch the Digital Notary Service in Japan next April. Primary targets will be government agencies and securities firms.

Also aimed at reassuring Web clients that they are seeing and receiving the "real thing" on-line is the latest version of SECURITY DYNAMICS TECHNOLOGIES, INC.'s digital authentication server software. Keon Certificate Server 5.0 generates and authenticates digital IDs for information sent over the Internet as well as for servers. The new version also is ready to authenticate electronic fund transfers and EDI (electronic data interchange) transactions. Available through SDT's subsidiary, a 500- user license is priced at $29,200.

LITRONIC INC. and new distributor ITOCHU TECHNO-SCIENCE CORP. expect to tap a growing market for Internet security software and services. The Irvine, California firm offers a wide range of Internet security solutions, everything from smart cards through public-key infrastructure systems. It already derives significant business from Japanese customers. The tie-up with Itochu Techno-Science will broaden Litronic's distribution channels and links to large corporate clients.

To build on the current interest in the Linux open-source operating system, LINUXCARE, INC. joined forces with DENSA TECHNO TOKYO K.K. to support and service Linux users in Japan. DTT, a subsidiary of HITACHI ELECTRONICS SERVICES CO., LTD., will provide initial and basic support at its recently opened Synthesis Linux Solution Center in Tokyo as well as over the telephone and on the Internet. San Francisco-based Linuxcare will train DTT personnel and handle complex problems.

In another sign of its commitment to support the 64-bit Unix market, COMPAQ COMPUTER CORP.'s subsidiary will start shipping in October a Japanese version of the Tru64 Unix operating system. The follow-on to Digital Unix, the $410 package is targeted at users of Compaq's Alpha-based family of servers and workstations as well as at hardware based on the forthcoming IA-64 architecture chip, the Itanium (code- named Merced).

Hoping to gain a toehold in the corporate server market, APPLE COMPUTER, INC. has teamed with two affiliates of NIPPON TELEGRAPH AND TELEPHONE CORP. to promote, market and support its Mac OS X Server operating system. NTT ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY CORP. will focus on its current customer base of communications services providers, while CYBER SPACE LABORATORIES will target sales of the server OS to medical institutions.

UNISYS CORP.'s affiliate introduced a new network messaging middleware program, OnNet DRB (distribution request broker). Developed in-house, the software ties together ERP packages and legacy business applications with new software via Java and eXtensible Markup Language translation modules. The Unisys subsidiary hopes to sell 100 copies of OnNet DRB the first year and 500 over three.

With time running out before the year 2000 begins, SOLUTIONSOFT SYSTEMS INC. has brought its full line of Y2K testing and contingency planning packages to corporate customers through a distribution agreement with NETSERVE INC. The San Jose, California firm's Time Machine is a date and time simulator, allowing users to test not only hardware but also software and data bases for sensitivity to Y2K issues. The time simulator also allows tests to be conducted more quickly because system data need not be reloaded before and after tests. Finally, Time Machine can temporarily alleviate Y2K problems by fooling applications into thinking that January 1, 2000 has not yet arrived. Netserve is aiming for sales of 10,000 packages, with the Windows NT version of Time Machine priced at $650 and the Unix edition at $6,500.

ORACLE CORP.'s local unit has released an update of its integrated development environment for Java, JDeveloper Suite for Windows NT 2.0. For $2,900, the Java IDE includes JDeveloper 2.0, Oracle8i, Oracle Application Server 4.0, Oracle Procedure Builder 6.0, Oracle Lite 3.6 and a Java programming text.

Aimed at more than simply making legacy mainframes Web-friendly, San Diego, California-based AONIX's RP/Web enterprise integration/application development environment acts like an intelligent go-between among mainframe, server-centric and client-based applications. Available through SUNTORY LTD., the package increases the efficiency of mainframe-to-Web transactions without requiring complicated changes to existing software. RP/Web costs $33,300 for companies already using Aonix's NOMAD programming language and $50,000 and up for those that do not. NICHIMEN DATA SYSTEMS CORP. and KOZO KEIKAKU ENGINEERING INC. also distribute Aonix products.

NOVELL, INC.'s subsidiary has made several moves to defend its share of the network operating system market. First, it rolled out a Japanese version of Novell Directory Services 8, giving IT managers a comprehensive tool to manage their network's hardware, soft-ware and user information data bases (network directories). At the moment, the localized version of NDS 8 works only with the NetWare 5 NOS, but it is free for download via the Internet. NDS 8 versions for Windows NT, Solaris and Linux are planned within the next 12 months. Second, the Novell unit is expanding its network systems consulting business and sales of NOS products, hoping to double revenues within two or three years. The company will boost its systems engineering staff by 30 people or 25 percent. It also plans to tighten business relationships with the operation of network hardware giant CISCO SYSTEMS, INC.


Taking aim at a key market dominated by its competition, SUN MICROSYSTEMS, INC. now offers a localized network server package designed for branch offices, workgroups and departments. Solaris Easy Access Server 3.0J mixes the reliability and the power of Sun's version of the Unix operating system with the ease-of-use features enjoyed by Windows NT administrators. The special package is easy to install, configure and administer. It also is interoperable with Windows NT servers and supports all Internet standards. To Sun, this all adds up to a lower total cost of ownership.

With 24x7 reliability of network servers becoming increasingly important for corporate operations and e-commerce, IBM JAPAN LTD. has released a clustering add-on for its Netfinity line and Windows NT operating system. Netfinity Availability Extension for Microsoft Cluster Service v1.0 makes it possible to create an eight-node server cluster with automatic failover using N-way or N+1-way clustering with Fibre Channel storage links, high-speed interconnection and single-point management control.

The subsidiary of Santa Clara, California-based NETIQ CORP. has rolled out a new version of its network and application management package. AppManager 3.0J allows administrators to control and fine-tune the performance of network software as well as key network applications from a central console. The network management add-on is available from FUJITSU, LTD. and HITACHI, LTD. on an OEM basis as well as from the Japanese unit of COMPAQ COMPUTER CORP. for anywhere from $1,200 to $5,100.

Also debuting a new version of a core product is COMPUWARE CORP. The Farmington Hills, Michigan company's EcoSCOPE 4.0.1 adds more analysis tools to earlier versions of the network application testing and performance evaluation package. Rapidly determining and repairing the root source of application problems is a key component of delivering service level management to critical users.

For the first time, HEWLETT-PACKARD CO. has agreed to license its entire portfolio of HP OpenView NetMetrix software for machines running the HP-UX operating system. The OEM deal for a Japanese version of the network traffic monitoring package is with NEC CORP. The electronics giant will market the product as part of its SystemScope line of system and network management solutions, targeting purchasers of its NX7000 server family, which comes preinstalled with HP-UX.

FRESHWATER SOFTWARE, INC. has picked ASGENT INC. as the exclusive distributor of its server monitoring software, SiteScope. The Boulder, Colorado company's program monitors such key operational variables as unused CPU cycles and open disk storage space, watching for conditions where a fault may occur. If a problem does crop up, SiteScope can help the server repair itself or notify the administrator of the issue. Asgent is selling the Unix version of SiteScope for $4,000 and a Windows NT version for $1,500. The Tokyo marketer aims for a first-year sales total of 300 packages.

Entering the enterprise network storage space, COMPAQ COMPUTER CORP.'s subsidiary released a localized version of StorageWorks Virtual Replicator. For $1,700, the software monitors and manages networked data storage resources, ensuring that key data are copied for safekeeping and reliability. StorageWorks Virtual Replicator creates a virtual storage pool that also speeds backups and improves utilization rates.

The SecureIT division of VERISIGN, INC. is distributing its Firewall HealthCHECK package through FORVAL CREATIVE, INC. and HITACHI INFORMATION NETWORK, LTD. The utility allows companies to test and evaluate the ability of their FireWall-1 software from CHECK POINT SOFTWARE TECHNOLOGIES LTD. to fend off unauthorized access and other attacks. The two Tokyo-based distributors also will provide technical support for the firewall probe.

TELCORDIA TECHNOLOGIES, INC. (formerly Bell Communications Research or Bellcore) and Tokyo's INTERNATIONAL NETWORK SECURITY INC. have joined forces to bid for network security contracts from companies and local governments. INSI will use its Morristown, New Jersey partner's know-how and software to tailor network security solutions and provide internal and external security monitoring. INSI has set its basic service fee at $166,700. It hopes to generate total revenues of $8.3 million the first year. Telcordia Technologies is a SCIENCE APPLICATIONS INTERNATIONAL CORP. company.

Going up against the previous pair are SRI INTERNATIONAL and OKI ELECTRIC INDUSTRY CO., LTD. They are developing a full menu of network security products and consulting services. Oki Electric will rely on the Menlo Park, California firm's subsidiary for advanced training and know-how, in turn providing four service options to customers. Basic service includes evaluations of security needs, installing a basic system and training customers in its use. The systems configuration option covers evaluation, design and consulting on tailor-made security solutions. Oki Electric also will be positioned to operate and maintain a customer's security system and to test and monitor its functioning.

Building on its strong position in the enterprise management solutions market, TIVOLI SYSTEMS INC. wants to extend its EMS model throughout a client company's Internet business activities. The vehicle is Tivoli Cross-Site. It controls, monitors, diagnoses and responds to disruptions in a firm's Internet transactions to improve reliability and customer service. The package also manages the delivery of applications and data over the Internet. Cross-Site gives users control over the performance of their entire Internet activities, whether through ISPs, virtual private networks or value-added networks.

In a bow to the Web tidal wave, Dublin, Ohio-based STERLING COMMERCE, INC. turned its GENTRAN family of enterprise application integration products into a complete e-business solution. GENTRAN's Web Suite, Web Forms, Web Data Exchange, Internet Data Exchange, Real-time Integration and NetShop cover all the bases for firms that want to integrate their business processes through the Internet.

MICROSOFT CORP.'s subsidiary soon will release updated versions of its popular family of back-office suites for all sizes of businesses. BackOffice Server 4.5 has improved installation, configuration and management tools designed to ease implementation and lower operating costs. A five-seat license for this software costs $5,200. For $2,400, BackOffice Small Business Server 4.5 gives small firms a turnkey solution to their intranet and Internet needs.

HEWLETT-PACKARD JAPAN LTD. is offering customers the latest edition of OpenMail, its large-scale messaging and collaboration solution. Version 6.0 has improved support for Microsoft Outlook, enhanced high-end scalability, native Internet and Web support, easy interoperability with legacy programs and less need for maintenance by IT staffs. Running on HP-UX, OpenMail 6.0 pricing starts at $4,300 for a 50-user license.


Leveraging the growing popularity of the Microsoft Exchange messaging platform, COMPAQ COMPUTER CORP.'s subsidiary rolled out a Japanese version of Work Expediter 1.1. The software allows users and developers to easily create customized groupware applications based on the Exchange platform, such as workgroup and workflow solutions. Pricing begins at $7,500 for the corporate knowledge management tool.

LOTUS DEVELOPMENT CORP.'s Japanese team is not laying down on the job. Responding to tougher competition, the subsidiary has set up a unit to market knowledge management solutions using its Notes/Domino R5 groupware platform. The group hopes to capitalize on R5's built-in Internet technologies and customizable search, distribution and personalization features to tailor solutions to clients' specific needs. Unit members also will handle customer training and help-desk tasks.

In a major move to defend its slice of the knowledge management market, BRIO TECHNOLOGY, INC. established a wholly owned subsidiary to market and support its Brio ONE suite. Brio.Enterprise, Brio. Report and Brio.Portal let companies build and deliver business intelligence, enterprise reporting and analytic applications to intranet and extranet users. The Palo Alto, California company's products already are distributed by CANON SALES CO., INC., SHARP SYSTEMS PRODUCTS, INC. and 15 other firms. Canon Sales alone reported a 300 percent-plus jump in Brio products and services last year. Brio felt, however, that a local presence was needed to further expand marketing, distribution and support channels.

The Trillium Software unit of HARTE-HANKS, INC. selected AGREX INC. of Tokyo to localize, market and distribute its data-cleansing and reengineering software. Billerica, Massachusetts-based Trillium helps companies bring legacy data resources into step with current technologies by standardizing and consolidating them. Agrex has targeted businesses with huge legacy data bases — such as financial, credit and communications firms — as initial customers, with a sales goal of 100 licenses by March 2002. Trillium for Windows NT, which costs $166,700 for a single-user license, is available now. A Unix version is planned for 2000.

The subsidiary of manufacturing execution software maker ENGINEOUS SOFTWARE, INC. continues to build its customer base. SONY CORP.'s home network unit has licensed the Morrisville, North Carolina firm's iSIGHT MES package for use in developing and producing intelligent home appliances. iSIGHT is in use at 18 Japanese companies under 27 licenses (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No 353, February 1999, p. 27).

After 30 months of development and $10 million in expenditures, the Austin, Texas- based Fab Solutions division of OBJECTSPACE, INC. is ready to go global with its Catalyst MES package. The advanced process control software solution is designed specifically for semiconductor manufacturers. It can be applied across multiple process areas and deployed in multiple factories to improve process capabilities, overall equipment effectiveness, ramp yield and volume. Sales and support for Catalyst and other ObjectSpace products in Japan will be provided by TOKYO SYSTEMS LABORATORIES, INC.

STRUCTURAL DYNAMICS RESEARCH CORP. has beefed up its product data management line with two new packages. Metaphase Document Manager makes product documents part of the on-line product descriptions, allowing both in-house and customer engineers to search via a Web browser a firm's entire knowledge base for needed information. MetaDM includes authoring tools, Web-centric search engines, workflow services and change controls. Metaphase Virtual Product Development Manager brings 3D visualization tools to enterprise-level PDM. By allowing engineers to see parts and visualize how they fit together, MetaVPDM speeds the development of production models based on PDM data. INFORMATION SERVICES INTERNATIONAL-DENTSU, LTD. and OKI ELECTRIC INDUSTRY CO., LTD. distribute SDRC's products.

COCREATE SOFTWARE INC.'s unit now offers a localized version of its Design Management PDM solution. Thanks to compatibility with such 3D computer-aided design programs as ME10 and 3D SolidDesigner, the package quickly imports, catalogs, categorizes and organizes 2D and 3D product data as well as related documents. With a single server license of $1,600, CoCreate Software hopes to sell as many as 1,000 systems the first year. It is a HEWLETT-PACKARD CO. company.

Combining elements of PDM and supply chain management, NCR CORP.'s Japan- only Profit demand chain management package provides an integrated back-end solution for the distribution industry. Developed originally by a Canadian group, Profit boosts the return on inventory investments, reduces delivery problems and raises overall efficiency along the distribution chain. Pricing starts at $350,000.

Software from PARAGON MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS provides similar benefits to the semiconductor industry. The Los Angeles firm's Paragon Applications suite is used by repeat customer TOSHIBA CORP., for example, to collapse cycle times, reduce work- in-progress volume, shrink inventories and improve customer service. Toshiba also uses Paragon's Material and Capacity Planner at three of its factories to optimize production planning based on capacity, material and customer parameters. Most recently, Paragon Applications went live at SHARP CORP. The company's IC group deployed Supply Chain Planner to synchronize purchasing, production, product flow and distribution across its facilities in Japan and abroad.

MANUGISTICS, INC.'s subsidiary introduced a new version of its supply chain management module tailored for the Japanese market. SupplyC 6.0 is the core of the Rockville, Maryland firm's "e-chain" SCM architecture, covering all aspects of supply and product information. Not surprisingly, SupplyC works closely with Manugistics' ERP offerings.

A competing PDM/SCM/EDI package is on the market from OPTIKA INC. The Colorado Springs, Colorado developer's eMedia software and methodology manage the full range of documents, interactions and communications within an organization, across its extranet and throughout its supply chain. eMedia allows users to customize their interface to their specific needs while handling practically any form of information. It also manages process workflows and supports negotiations via the extranet. Distributor TOYO INK MANUFACTURING CO., LTD. has a broad pricing range — $1,000 to $85,000 — based on a client's needs. It hopes to ring up $4.2 million in sales the first year.


Two heavyweight teams have entered the SCM consulting ring. In one corner, the local units of ARTHUR D. LITTLE INC. and Irving, Texas-based I2 TECHNOLOGIES, INC. have inked a pact giving the former responsibility for developing SCM solutions and the latter the job of implementing them using its Rhythm software (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No. 354, March 1999, p. 28). Arthur D. Little will focus in part on helping Japanese firms with U.S. manufacturing plants integrate them more tightly with their Japan operations to yield economies of scale and other efficiency gains. The partners are aiming for 10 contracts a year for total revenues of $25 million to $33.3 million.

In the other corner, the subsidiaries of DUN & BRADSTREET CORP. and SAS INSTITUTE INC. are collaborating on streamlining corporate supply chains. Their solution combines SAS Institute's data warehouse software with D&B's industry and product coding system, which they claim will shave 5 percent to 10 percent off of procurement-related costs. The two are installing test systems and plan a full commercial rollout early next year.

ORACLE CORP. continues to push into the front-office market by bundling and fine- tuning its line of Web-based information management products. Oracle CRM3i is a suite of 35 modules organized into five product families: Oracle Marketing, Oracle Sales, Oracle Service, Oracle Call Center and Oracle E-Commerce. The suite also interfaces seamlessly with other Oracle products and many third-party ERP packages.

Firing back, CLARIFY INC. has massaged its customer relationship management products into an integrated solution. eFrontOffice uses the Internet to link together all aspects of customer-related activities, elimi-nating what the San Jose, California company calls the "Internet islands" that can characterize nonintegrated CRM products. A basic eFrontOffice server package is priced at $25,000. Client modules run $5,000 each, while a developers' toolkit is available for $25,000. Clarify's subsidiary expects the new offering to generate sales of $8.3 million the first year.

CORPORATE SOFTWARE LTD. — a joint venture of Canton, Massachusetts-based STREAM INTERNATIONAL INC. (40 percent) and FUJITSU, LTD. (60 percent) that has been in business since late 1994 — is expanding its call-center service operations. The Tokyo company already provides call-center services on an outsourced basis for 13 firms, including MICROSOFT CORP.'s subsidiary. Corporate Software plans to nearly triple its marketing staff to 30 people and to expand its customer base to include financial institutions. It is projecting revenues of $41.7 million in FY 1999 compared with $25 million the year before.

As Japan's financial sector rushes to meet the twin challenges of global competition and Big Bang deregulation, American firms are ready with vital software tools. For instance, TCAM SYSTEMS, INC. and SUMITOMO ELECTRIC INDUSTRIES, LTD. are working together to sell the New York City firm's full line of electronic trading products to stock exchanges and financial companies. AOM-J (automated order management Japanese) is a front-office suite with modules for order entry via the Internet, broker order entry and routing, order booking, order monitoring, order confirmation and account activity review. SWAN-J is a multicurrency, multimarket, multicompany international securities settlement suite for the back office. And TMIG-J (TCAM market information gateway Japanese) provides access to electronic market quotes, orders and market data based on the FIX (financial information exchange) protocol. Even though TCAM Systems has been acquired by a Swedish company, SEI will continue to market and sell the U.S. firm's products. In fact, it recently formed a company for this purpose.

BEA SYSTEMS, INC. has joined NEC CORP.'s Global Banking System solution alliance, which already includes HEWLETT-PACKARD CO. and ORACLE CORP. among its members. The San Jose, California partner will contribute its Web and transaction middleware products to NEC's Distributed Integrated Open Systems for Applications architecture, which is designed to replace mainframe systems in financial institutions. NEC already has received from a Japanese bank the first order for the BankingWeb21 system. Shipments are scheduled to begin in April 2000. Over five years, NEC is looking for worldwide orders of 100 systems, with the basic configuration priced at $16.7 million. The package consists of a NEC server, the HP- UX operating system, data base software from Oracle and BEA's middleware.

NESTOR, INC. licensed its PRISM Credit package to UC CARD CO., LTD., thanks to the efforts of strategic partner CSK CORP. Japan's third-largest credit-card issuer will rely on the Providence, Rhode Island company's product to detect fraudulent charges among its $18 billion business volume, protecting the interests of its 13 million customers. .....Competitor HNC SOFTWARE INC. has sold its Falcon fraud-detection software to CREDIT SAISON CO., LTD. and DC CARD CO., LTD. Like PRISM Credit, Falcon tracks unusual card activity and notifies operators if user-set parameters are exceeded.

MINERVA SYSTEMS, INC. introduced its Minerva Impression DVD authoring package through MA-RUBENI SOLUTIONS CORP. The Mountain View, California developer's $16,700 software is designed for corporate and educational video producers, offering a full array of interactive, digital nonlinear editing tools. Its format-independent import engine allows any AVI file to be imported into the system, eliminating the need for a separate MPEG encoder. Minerva Impression works with the widely used Adobe PhotoShop family of image-editing tools.

An update of its localized image data-base software has been finalized by INTERNATIONAL MICROCOMPUTER SOFTWARE, INC. of Novato, California. MasterClips Image Server 1.5J sorts, categorizes and organizes image information, making it easier for users to find exactly the right image for their project. IMSI's products are distributed by DATT JAPAN INC., ROCK INTERNATIONAL, SUMITOMO METAL INDUSTRIES LTD. and WINNINGRUN SOFTWARE, INC.

AUTODESK, INC. has freshened its core product line of CAD packages. AutoCAD Architectural Desktop R2 ($5,800), Mechanical Desktop R4 ($8,000) and Mechanical 2000 ($5,800) bring an object-oriented approach to mid and upper-range CAD packages. .....Also in the midrange CAD market, PARAMETRIC TECHNOLOGY CORP.'s subsidiary is offering Pro/DESKTOP for $5,000. The Windows-native 3D design environment features an easy-to-learn interface and product information management tools. The Waltham, Massachusetts company's marketing unit expects to license 1,000 seats in the first year of Pro/DESKTOP's availability.

Following up on the positive reception for its novel place-and-route system for deep submicron ICs, MAGMA DESIGN AUTOMATION, INC. opened a service and support subsidiary in Tokyo. The new operation is working closely with the Cupertino, California firm's distributor, SC HIGHTECH CORP., to develop sales of the Blast Fusion electronic design automation package.

Like its parent, XILINX, INC.'s subsidiary has taken to the Web to distribute design support services for its programmable logic device tools. The Japanese-language tools are free to users of Xilinx's XC9500 series of complex PLDs. By saving customers the expense of buying PLD design software, which costs as much as $25,000, the firm hopes to boost sales of its logic devices.

Embedded systems tool maker INTEGRATED SYSTEMS, INC. has broadened its localized offerings to boost sales of software and services. The Sunnyvale, California firm's subsidiary is selling products developed by recent ISI acquisitions. These are a compiler from DIAB DATA, INC. of Foster City, California and a debugger from Chicago's SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT SYSTEMS, INC. (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No. 349, October 1998, p. 23). ISI plans to merger the two purchases into an independently run business, DIAB-SDS, INC.

In a key win, FUJITSU, LTD. selected DENALI SOFTWARE, INC.'s SOMA (specification of memory architecture) EDA language for Web-based delivery of its flash memory modules for system-on-a-chip and memory submodule designs. The Palo Alto, California company's SOMA-format spec sheets are part of Fujitsu's on-line product information data base. They describe a new type of dual-operation, 3-volt memory design that can perform read, program and erase functions simultaneously.

TCSI CORP. has licensed its Assurance Director package to GLOBAL ACCESS LTD. to manage its forthcoming communications network. A Type I carrier, Global Access is owned by GLOBAL CROSSING LTD. (49 percent) and MARUBENI CORP. (51 percent) (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No. 352, January 1999, p. 26). Since it will be leasing capacity from other carriers as well as operating its own, the joint venture will rely heavily on Alameda, California TCSI's Assurance Director to provide customers with the quality of service they demand.

Hoping to catch the wave of excitement behind NTT MOBILE COMMUNICATIONS NETWORK, INC.'s iMode cellular phone Internet-based service (see Japan-U.S. Business Report No. 358, July 1999, p. 36), COMPAQ COMPUTER CORP.'s subsidiary has announced a software package that delivers groupware functions via the advanced wireless network. Bizport client software allows iMode users to send messages to each other, make joint schedules, reserve meeting rooms and perform other functions via their iMode handsets. Bizport JET is a small-scale server package that can handle up to 50 iMode clients, while Bizport SQL Server can support up to 200 users.

An exchange rate of ¥120=$1.00 was used in this report.aaaaaa

Top aaaaa Issue Index aaaaa 1999 Archive Index aaaa Subscriber Areaaaaa Home