Some two years after it set up an aggressive direct sales group to tackle corporate accounts, Informix is moving to reassert itself with its resellers.
"Back then it was essential we establish a presence in the corporate and government market," said John MacLeod, technical director for Informix Australia. "Resellers accounted for about 70 per cent of our business. Today, resellers still account for the same dollar value but it's only about 30 per cent of the total."
"We'd like that to get a lot higher," added MacLeod.
While it was growing its direct channel, Informix also embarked on an ambitious plan to combine its relational database with an object oriented database it acquired with the buyout of Illustra.
It achieved the combination with the launch of Informix Universal Server late last year.
However, the launch shifted the company's focus away from its bread-and-butter database business with disastrous financial results for the first quarter of this year.
The past is past
In the wake of the results, the company recently announced that its chairman, Phil White, had resigned and will be replaced by 3Com's former president Robert Finocchio, who just joined Informix as president and CEO.
"The results and the shake-up are behind us now," said MacLeod. "Sales of Universal Server have been good and we are working closely with some of our resellers in specific markets."
Three of the company's resellers are global - SAP, Baan and PeopleSoft.
"Many of our local resellers have skills that we can both use to our advantage," MacLeod said.
One of the areas being pushed by Informix with software developers is its DataBlade concept. These allow end users to mix different types of data such as text, spatial images, voice and video.
Thus far about 40 different types of DataBlades have been developed - includ- ing at least one by an Australian software company.
Informix's DataBlades could be developed for business logic, such as adding a new employee to the database, rather than having to do this using a separate application server.
Informix is also working on a database-interface project, code-named Visionary, that would give users a multimedia, or perhaps spreadsheet-like, front end to the database in place of traditional business forms.
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