Dell's Falling Camel, Gulfshore Gets CRM Facial, PacificNet on NASDAQ, Leifheit

David Sims : First Coffee
David Sims
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Dell's Falling Camel, Gulfshore Gets CRM Facial, PacificNet on NASDAQ, Leifheit

By David Sims

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Sonny Rollins's "Moritat," which you'd recognize as "Mack the Knife:"

Gulfshore Technologies, Inc. has announced that Facial Esthetique, a medical spa facility in Bonita Springs, Florida has selected their collaborative InternetOffice.Biz suite of products to manage their eCommerce website and their in-house Point of Sale, as well as to meet their Content, Contact, CRM Management and growing back office needs.

Didn't know some place named "Facial Esthetique" needed CRM, didja?

Facial Esthetique's medical program is run under a licensed healthcare professional, who determined that to run their medical and beauty office well they required an Office Suite that was capable of teaming their online products with their in-house services.

Accordingly Internet Office allows Facial Esthetique to manage and track their product sales and services through their website and in the office at checkout. In addition, the Internet Office Suite of Products allows Facial Esthetique to manage and report on accounts receivable/payable; quickly and easily produce treatment plans upon checkout; schedule treatment rooms; organize their back office; share calendars; manage their online content and products; and collaborate with all aspects of the business with one easy to use, completely online software tool.

Best part of it all? "No need for servers, tech staff, networking and disparate systems to manage the business of beauty," according to company officials, " does it all in a secure online environment with daily backups to co-locations."

Don't you love that, "the business of beauty?"

PacificNet Inc., a vendor of Customer Relationship Management and telemarketing services, call center, e-commerce, and Value-Added Services in China, has been selected by The NASDAQ Stock Market to become a member of the newly established NASDAQ Global Market.

PacificNet's trading symbol will be NasdaqGM:PACT.

PacificNet President, Victor Tong said the company's move from the Small Cap to the National Market in 2005, "and now to the prestigious NASDAQ Global Market" is a "testament to our continued positive growth."

Tong finds the move significant for both the company and its shareholders "as we continue to move forward giving us increased liquidity and visibility. We believe the NASDAQ Global Market listing will increase our access to institutional investors which will broaden our shareholder base and ultimately benefit our investors."

The NASDAQ Global Market consists of over 1,450 companies that have applied for listing, having met and continued to meet financial and liquidity requirements and agreed to meet specific corporate governance standards.

Formerly called The NASDAQ National Market, this market was renamed in 2006 to reflect the global character of this market and the companies whose securities are listed.

Leifheit, a manufacturer of non-electrical household appliances and bathroom accessories and textiles, has selected arcplan's process-oriented business intelligence platform, arcplan Enterprise, to "underpin its decision support and sales analysis," according to company officials.

The company will be using CIM-OLAP, an arcplan Enterprise-based analytical application, developed by the German arcplan partner antares Informations-Systeme GmbH, to deliver management information.

Before the implementation of the application, or Management Information System, company officials say, Leifheit field sales staff in Germany used a CRM system for sales and revenue analysis. The system was distributed: a central repository was installed on a server and local databases were installed on each salesperson's laptop.

Sounds good, but this resulted in "differences between some of the figures on the laptops and on the central server, making it harder to produce accurate reports on results and the long-term plans based on them," company officials say, pointing out that "this system required a considerable amount of support."

So Leifheit evaluated alternatives and selected the OLAP module of the Corporate Information Mall product, which was developed by the German arcplan partner antares Informations-Systeme GmbH.

(First Coffee's just going by the information he's been given, but is wondering if these Germans have something against capital letters.)

Using this product Leifheit staff can look up the enterprise-wide development of specific customers or product lines as well as revenue comparisons between individual planning periods. With this level of detailed knowledge, Leifheit says its employees can recognize tendencies faster and plan profitable business developments more accurately.

Leifheit's MIS is based on arcplan Enterprise and includes OLAP technology and predefined data models and input forms for analyses and reports. The data are updated automatically on a daily basis and centrally stored in a SQL Server database.

Geeks without a social life have today circled on their calendars, it's the birthday of Gene Roddenberry, and if you have to ask "Who's he?" then you have probably been out on a date at least once or twice in your life.

The creator of Star Trek, Roddenberry was born in El Paso, Texas in 1921. In the early 1960s, he saw there were no quality science fiction series on TV, Writer's Almanac says, "so he created Star Trek. The first episode debuted on September 8, 1966 on NBC."

It's important to understand now that it was a decent show. Wasn't great, wasn't terrible, it was a good show. Rather different for its time, though, folks weren't sure how to take it -- after the premiere, Roddenberry's father went up and down the street apologizing to neighbors for the show.

It didn't get great ratings and was nearly canceled, but the show's supporters helped keep the series going until 1969, as Cheers fans did in the early days of that show, and afterwards turned their attention to ensuring that William Shatner would never have to work at an honest job again and that Leonard Nimoy could foist off some of the worst doggerel this side of Suzanne Somers as "poetry."


There's an Arab proverb saying "A falling camel attracts a thousand knives," which one should bear in mind when reading about geopolitical events these days, but which also explains the almost gleeful schadenfreude accompanying Dell's
announced recall of 4.1 million laptop batteries with faulty lithium ion cells liable to overheating and catching fire.

It goes along with Dell missing its earnings target in May, and having to "hustle" to spend $100 million "to improve customer service by hiring new call center employees, beefing up service packages, and simplifying cost structures," according to industry observer Ben Ames.

It gets worse: In July, as Ames says, Dell "offered a rebate to customers in China who had received the wrong processor in their laptops, a cheaper version of Intel's Core Duo chip than they had been promised."

Dell had partially blamed a soft market for its disappointing quarterly profits of $502 million, about half of last year's, but when Hewlett-Packard announced strong earnings everyone started asking "Soft market? What soft market?"

And with the ongoing SEC investigation there's Dell blood in the water, and HP sniffs an opportunity to take over Dell's top spot in the PC market. Stay tuned.

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