The news as of the fifth coffee, and if you're not awake by the fifth coffee forget it, go back to bed and start over tomorrow.
The music is a Beach Boys iTunes mix. Really it's quite wonderful music every now and then, especially if you get their late '60s and early '70s albums, like "Wild Honey," "Holland," "Smiley Smile," "Surf's Up" and "Sunflower." If you haven't heard those you'll be surprised how different they are from "Surfin' U.S.A." and "Fun Fun Fun," as great as their early style is:
, a vendor of software products for insurance, bancassurance, and government, has announced that Quinn-Insurance, the second largest property and casualty insurer in Ireland, has gone live with its Fineos Claims product.
Fineos is now providing comprehensive enterprise claims management for Quinn's private motor lines and will be used by 600 employees at Quinn's insurance operations in Ireland. The second phase of the project will see the expansion of Fineos Claims to cover commercial lines and home insurance.
Colin Morgan, General Manager at Quinn-Insurance, says Fineos Claims is expected to deliver "improved efficiencies in claims processing."
In the high claims volume insurance industry, particularly for motor claims, the general industry consensus is that it is critical that insurers can process more claims faster and with greater accuracy, qualities more crucial than in other aspects of the insurance field. Fineos Claims is expected to help Quinn automate its claims process and reduce administrative costs.
Fineos was selected by Quinn following an evaluation of software products available for general insurance (property & casualty) claims processing.
Quinn-Insurance has been the fastest growing insurance company in Ireland over the past 12 years, and is now the second largest insurer in Ireland. Fineos is headquartered in Dublin with offices in North America, Europe and Australasia.
Software vendor Cincom Systems has joined with IBM Smart Business to sell IT business applications for SMBs on IBM's new Smart Market platform.
IBM Smart Business offers technology applications, services and support from a single- window and platform with a single point of contact.
Cincom's Business Intelligence software and Cincom Synchrony contact center and customer relationship management (CRM) tools designed for SMBs will be available on the IBM Smart Market platform.
"The simplicity, innovation, lower cost, and accessibility of a wide choice of business applications in the IBM Smart Market initiative - served by a single point of contact for service, billing and support - will be a powerful and attractive new force in the SMB market," says Pantulu Avasarala, Director, India Development Center.
CRM business intelligence and analytics vendor SAS
has announced that the Canadian arm of The Marketing Store, a branding and relationship management agency, has acquired SAS Analytics for its customer communications offerings.
SAS officials say the agency will use SAS to perform value-added segmentation, modeling and analysis of demand generation and communication campaigns it designs and executes for clients.
"The Marketing Store provides integrated marketing products to brands in the market today," says Jane Ragotte, Senior Vice President, Digital, Direct & Data, The Marketing Store (Canada), adding that the firm wanted to incorporate an analytical foundation to their marketing products for insight to improve the results for their client base.
Ajay Handa, Director of Business Intelligence and Analytics, The Marketing Store (Canada), says he believes applying SAS Analytics to segment and model the customers' data, at the front end of the campaign planning process, "will help improve overall response rates by delivering more targeted and relevant offerings to our clients' customers and prospects."
According to Handa, SAS will also be used to analyze the performance of campaigns to help enhance planning and results for future campaigns and forecast demand from client campaigns.
In Canada, The Marketing Store's client list includes McDonald's, Nissan, Diageo and Unilever. TMS is part of a global network headquartered in Chicago with offices in Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, London, Birmingham, Madrid, Paris, Sao Paulo, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Sydney, Toronto and Vietnam.
, a vendor of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software, has announced the release of SmartPage for EnterpriseIQ. SmartPage provides an intuitive portal that allows users to create customizable views of ERP functions, report requirements, e-mail, key performance indicators and more, on one screen.
The vendor is hoping that putting the ERP system and other commonly-used applications on one screen that SmartPage will be seen as a way to speed productivity.
Company officials are billing the SmartPage EnterpriseIQ product as giving customers the ability to create, save and share unlimited user roles, so employees "from the top floor to the shop floor" can get benefits from the system. Among other features, SmartPage provides unlimited RealTime production monitors giving shop floor feedback from remote or local business units.
Security is also enhanced through single, secured login functionality, designed specifically for role based programs. And links to e-mail programs, the Internet and customizable KPIs allow switching between programs on one screen.
Other features of the SmartPage interface include access to all extended ERP areas, including quality, engineering, accounting , manufacturing, customer service, maintenance, HR, production, and more.
There are also customizable charts and graphs with drill-down capabilities, what company officials call "RealTime Production Monitoring Speedometers" that filter by manufacturing cell or ePlant, and direct CRM access with calendar, calls, tasks, support and meetings by user or for all users, as well as e-mail integration.
Despite unfavorable economic conditions in countries such as the United States and Japan, the prospects for the retail software market look particularly promising in the emerging Asia Pacific and Central and Eastern European markets, according to an analysis from Frost & Sullivan
titled "World Retail Software Market."
This upward trend will continue, the analysts believe, "as retailers in these regions continue to focus on Business Intelligence , analytics and customer centric products."
The research firm found that the retail software market earned revenues of over $9.31 billion in 2007. Of this, software licensing accounted for $3.07 billion in 2007 and will reach $5.88 billion in 2014.
The study found that retailers have been substituting their legacy systems for modern day products built on industry-leading platforms, "facilitating the flow of business information across the entire value chain." The implementation of these products, the study's authors found, "helps manage performance enhancements by offering a perspective of all business information within the purview of the enterprise or retail chain."
As these products offer extensive performance enhancements, there is a wide scope for the uptake of advanced end-to-end products as well.
"The primary driver of the growth of the retail software industry is the growing focus on business integration and optimization," concludes Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Prasanna Prakash. "Using end-to-end products, retailers can reduce their total cost of ownership and make more informed business decisions on a day-to-day basis."
Besides reducing TCO, retail software also assists in providing uniform brand communication across various channels. Optimization across the various processes and channels allows the retailer to respond better to customer requirements.
Retailers are also turning to retail software products, particularly customer-centric products and BI, to build customer loyalty and try to improve the customer shopping experience through merchandise and promotions management.
Products such as customer relationship management (CRM) enable retailers to target premium customers using customized promotions and advertisements, thereby increasing the customer lifetime value involved.