Enterprise Solutions Briefs: Sabre, PictureTel, Ariba

Enterprise Solutions Briefs: Sabre, PictureTel, Ariba

Sabre buys GetThere, announces layoffs

Arguments over which company is leading the business-to-business (B2B) travel procurement space were put to rest last week when Sabre Holdings purchased its chief competitor, GetThere.

Sabre also announced plans to cut 1200 jobs company-wide over the coming months, or about 11 per cent of its workforce, to improve growth and profitability. Sabre and GetThere officials said the B2B operation will go largely untouched, adding that the majority of the cuts will come in Sabre's traditional travel agency support business.

Sabre will pay $US17.57 per share for GetThere, or a total of $757 million, bringing under one roof more than $50 million in expected earnings this year.

The new entity will retain the GetThere name, and Sabre will put its Business Travel Solutions (BTS) division under the leadership of GetThere president and CEO Gadi Maier.

PictureTel unveils latest videoconference range

Since its sneak preview to resellers in the US in April, PictureTel has announced the release of its latest videoconferencing range.

The PictureTel 900 Series runs across the Web and is designed to recognise different users as they log onto the conference.

The new range also boasts various modifications designed to streamline bumpy and unnatural picture quality as well as acknowledging the difference between people and content.The 900 Series is available

Ariba set to update e-procurement software

Ariba is set to release an updated version of its Ariba Buyer electronic-procurement software. The new version of the software supports seven languages and multiple currencies, including the euro.

Analysts described the new multinational functionality as vital for the software maker to sell into the world's largest companies.

"Right now, rollouts [of Ariba's software] are based primarily in the US. This will definitely add to their ability to execute globally," said Carl Lenz, an analyst at Gartner.

Ariba said other new features include a simpler, more intuitive user interface and an option that enables a company to deploy a single instance of the software in a central location but lets company users worldwide tap into the system in their preferred language.

Ariba said its user base comprises more than 200 global companies, including Hewlett-Packard, where some 20,000 employees use the software; Chevron and Texaco.

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