Baan acts under fire

Troubled Dutch software group Baan has released its first front office solution since UK group Invensys announced its intention to acquire the company.

The ailing software company is widely expected to axe more than 1,000 IT specialists this summer when Invensys completes the £472m take-over.

Shareholders will today decide whether or not to sell their shares.

It is estimated Baan is £60m in debt, but the company hopes its latest E-Customer Relationship Management offering proves successful.

‘BaanFrontOffice Interaction’ has been designed to allow companies to manage their marketing communications media in a close integration with marketing plans and sales activities of the customers’ companies.

It will cost at least $1,500 (£1,000), depending on the intended number of users.

The company said it was reacting to research which suggested more people are doing business through new channels such as the web.

‘Baan is delivering on our E-CRM vision by enabling companies looking to grow business relationships and increase sales to capture and act on all incoming and outgoing customer contact – most critically the web’, said a Baan spokeswoman.

‘With BaanFrontOffice Interaction, sales staff are armed with the full range information they need – from contract history to pricing information to data from ERP pr Supply Chain Systems – to respond to customer requests and close sales,’ she added.

Alan Yurko, chief executive of Invensys recently admitted poor management was to blame for the Dutch company’s collapse.

‘Management did not manage, costs did not come down,’ he said.

Invensys had claimed in January that Baan realised it could not survive as an independent entity and reverse six consecutive quarter net losses.

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