Home What's Brewing? Amazon, Google, Entellium on a Roll

Amazon, Google, Entellium on a Roll

Entellium has introduced its next generation CRM software tool designed to help small sales organizations sell more effectively. Titled Rave (ravecrm.com) the ASP-based software offers a host of time-saving, efficiency- enhancing features; an intuitive, visually rich user interface; advanced workflow and automation capabilities to better guide the behavior of sales professionals; and a “smart client” architecture that lets sales reps work both online and offline more easily.Rave was developed using Gamer Influenced Design (GID)(TM), an Entellium- grown concept that incorporates many of the elements found in today’s best- selling video games. GID gives traditional boring business software a makeover by integrating visually compelling gaming design techniques.

“Rave is CRM re-mastered for sales people,” said Paul Johnston, President and CEO of Entellium. “Rave achieves the double-whammy of delighting the sales rep and delivering all the business benefits our customers are looking for, but in a fun-to-use package that pure play-on-demand services can’t achieve.”

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In developing Rave, Johnston sought a sales productivity tool that embraced many key features found in today’s leading video game designs. “After doing a great deal of research, we found that gamers and sales professionals are remarkably similar,” Johnston said. “Both play against the clock, score points and require a play-to-win mentality to succeed. Based on these similarities, there is a great deal that business software can learn from the gaming world related to product design. Our latest release of Rave incorporates this thinking, and GID is our inspiration for delivering the mass of unmet unarticulated desires of business software users, whose experience has been neglected.” [24×7]

Amazon.com’s Stock at 14-month High
Shares of Amazon.com closed at a 14-month high after an analyst said the company’s hefty technology spending may soon pay off.

The online retailer’s stock rose $2.79, or 6.6 percent, to $45.20 on the Nasdaq Stock Market, its highest close since Jan. 27, 2006. The shares have gained 15 percent this year.

In a note to investors, Deutsche Bank analyst Jeetil Patel wrote that Seattle-based Amazon’s technology investments, which he estimated will top $600 million in 2007 for the second year in a row, indicate the company has a much bigger plan than excellence in e-commerce.

“In our opinion, Jeff Bezos and Amazon are ultimately trying to create the operating system of the Internet,” Patel wrote, referring to the company’s chief executive. [24×7]

Microsoft, AT&T Urge Scrutiny of Google Bid
Federal regulators have not decided which of two antitrust agencies will review Google’s $3.1 billion bid for the Internet advertising firm DoubleClick, but already Microsoft and AT&T are asking the government to take a long, hard look at a deal they fear will create an Internet colossus.

Google’s cash bid for DoubleClick, which delivers banner advertising to Web sites, raised howls from both firms, which have had their own antitrust issues in the past.

“We think this merger deserves close scrutiny,” said Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith. “Google is acquiring its only substantial competitor,” said AT&T Senior Vice President Jim Cicconi.

The ironies surrounding the complaints abound. Microsoft tussled with antitrust regulators through the 1990s. AT&T was broken up during the 1980s and its historic name was adopted by one of its spin-offs, SBC Communications — which spent the last year or so warring with activists and sparring with regulators over network neutrality, the policy debate over Internet traffic delivery.

Google spokesman Steve Langdon deflected the criticisms, saying even with DoubleClick his firm would serve “a tiny fraction of the total advertising market.” Calling the deal good for “advertisers, agencies, publishers and Internet users,” he said Google is “working quickly to assess which (regulatory) filings need to be made.”

Antitrust experts say the deal will have to pass muster with either the Federal Trade Commission or the antitrust division of the Department of Justice, which will decide between themselves which of them gets to consider the merger.

“I don’t think it’s incongruous for Microsoft or AT&T to raise antitrust issues,” said attorney Jesse Markham, a partner with San Francisco’s Morrison & Foerster. But, he added: “It’s usually not useful … (because) if you’re a seller in that market, you’re not a very credible complainant.” [24×7]