Adobe: New kid on the server block

Adobe: New kid on the server block

Roughly six months after jumping into the enterprise market, Adobe claims it’s on track to entice more high-end resellers in its strategic push to wedge PDF technology into the server world.

The company’s 6-month-old relationship with IBM, Documentum and SAP was bearing fruit, vice-president of worldwide solution channel sales, Todd Rowe, said.

Product integration was either complete or well on its way, he said.

The product rollouts extended Adobe’s reach into different technology segments including ERP, enterprise content management and middleware, Rowe said.

On the global front, he said Documentum had launched four solutions in the last six months, product integration with IBM’s WebSphere (content manager and other middleware) was complete, and beta work with SAP is nearing an end.

“With SAP, every single product application will have Adobe server technology included,” he said.

The date to watch for is April 6.

Closer to home, Adobe is working with 10 Australian partners including system integrators (such as Accenture and PCAIT). “We’re actively recruiting in Australia,” he said.

The company was setting its sights on the enterprise space because it’s positioned as the fastest growing revenue stream.

Overall, Adobe's latest numbers indicate a 42 per cent year-over-year growth in the e-paper business in fiscal 2003, rolling in $444.1 in revenue. This accounted for more than one-third of the company’s overall revenue, Rowe said.

In the fourth quarter of 2003, the company reported revenue of $118.1 million in the e-paper business. This represented a 40 per cent year-over-year growth.

Document collaboration, document creation and business process management were set to sizzle, he said, indicating the server-based PDF technology pushes the feature-rich functionality into the enterprise.

“We’ve done a lot of that on the desktop, but now we can move it into the enterprise,” he said.

However, it was a challenge to pitch the enterprise concept to customers, who mainly knew the company in the desktop realm. “We’ve got great brand image, but people don’t think of us as having mission-critical technology,” Rowe said. Adobe Australia’s enterprise partner manager, Lee Gale, agreed.

He said it was a challenge moving users beyond the free Reader mindset.

Nonethless, the company's breadth of desktop software and server-based solutions would now change the perception, Gale said.

In addition to clinching deals and trawling for partners, expect to see a lot of action this spring, Rowe said, hinting at product rollouts. These would include different modules and cater to NT, Unix and Linux.

Pressed for more, he wouldn’t divulge specific product details.

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