Siebel homes in on in-house development

The company is eyeing up the potentially lucrative market as it moves swiftly to quash speculation over its future.

‘Talk of who has what market share misses the point,’ said Neil Morgan, marketing vice-president for EMEA. ‘There are still many businesses using systems they have built themselves. There is a huge opportunity to grow into this area.’

He went on to say that the recently signed partnership with IBM would strengthen Siebel’s chances to attract those with bespoke systems. Under the agreement, Siebel will be optimised for certain IBM technology.

Morgan believes that will give Siebel a better chance to sell to sectors, such as retail banking. ‘We’re developing a product aimed specifically at bank branch offices. It should be available before the end of the year,’ he said.

But analysts do not share Siebel’s optimism. Datamonitor predicts it will be mainly small firms that spend on CRM, and Siebel has neither the products nor the channel to serve this sort of market.

Larry Ellison, the charismatic chairman and CEO of fierce rival Oracle, recently dismissed Siebel as a ‘dying firm’.

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