28 Nov 2016
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‘Re-focused’ Tibco gears up for ‘spectacular’ 2017 on back of DX

By Heather Wright

After two years of transforming itself, integration and analytics vendor Tibco is turning its focus on its Australian and New Zealand channel partners and customers.

The company, which began life more than 20 years ago selling and implementing market data systems for real time financial trading, has expanded its repertoire and is hoping to ride the digital transformation wave, providing interconnection of systems and applications, and augmented intelligence.

Matt Quinn, Tibco Software executive vice president, products and technology and chief technology officer, says Tibco has two key areas of focus.

“We help support customers in their digitalisation journey - so we interconnect everything, all the systems and applications in the cloud and on-premise. We integrate them all so everyone has a shared understanding of everything going on in the enterprise,” Quinn says.

“And then we have technologies around what we call augment intelligence, which is focused around things like analytics and reporting off the information we have connected together.

“We connect stuff together and using the information we have connected together we try to help people make smarter decisions.”

Australian-born Quinn says Tibco’s own transformation gives the company empathy when it comes to helping customers on their digital journey, in particular the move to an omni-channel approach.

“We were, and had been for many years a traditional enterprise software provider, largely focused on the CIO and heads of business relationships.

“But as our market has grown and matured and as customers have really started to see this democratisation of access to IT - so it’s not just the IT department that has access to technology, it’s everybody - we ourselves had to go to an omni-channel approach where yes, direct sales is a big part of who we are as an enterprise software company, vending through the cloud with local presence in ANZ, channel partners, marketplaces - these are all places we need to be in in order to support both our existing customers as well as new initiatives we are starting to see in the marketplace.”

While the company has traditionally played at the high end of town, with enterprise solutions, recent additions to its lineup are offering potential for smaller businesses - and a new reseller base.

The company recently launched its personal automation software-as-a-service solution, Simplr to automate repetitive tasks, connecting cloud apps, manage and move data across apps.

“Simplr does not require a technical skill level; this is Tibco for everyone,” Quinn says.

“It’s our goal to empower users of all backgrounds with tools to achieve greater digital success and the Simplr application supports this by streamlining users’ business processes and increasing their productivity without relying on IT teams or coding.”

“We’ve done something similar on the analytics side with Spotfire Cloud, which is our enterprise analytics tool, which we also offer as a cloud-based service,” Quinn says.

Next year will see ‘a whole bunch’ of new products and services announced mid-year, he says. While he declined to detail what those products will be, he says ‘about 90% of the announcements will be around new ways and new abilities to consume our core pieces of software’.

“2016 was a pretty big year for us as we really doubled down on this omni-channel approach to our software and as part of that we did release a bunch of new capabilities on our platform. 2017 is going to be bigger tha 2016 in terms of annuncements.”

That won’t however, translate to big growth in the vendor’s ANZ reseller channel, which includes global system integrators, ‘technically minded’ channel partners and professional services partners - at least not initially.

Daniel Churches, Tibco Software ANZ regional vice president, says instead the company is looking to stabilise the local channel first.

“We need to get back on the oars with our channel partners and we’re going to do that in a very studied approach.

“I expect the expansion will come in the second half of 2017.”

Churches says the company’s immediate focus is to reconnect with its existing partner and customer bases to rekindle the relationships.

“We’ve had some great relationships with our channel in the past but it has softened over the last couple of years because of our refocus on how we were going to prepare and reposition ourselves in the market.

“Now the channel is ready to warm up that conversation with us and we are ready to warm up the conversation with them.”

The company has a long history in Australia and New Zealand - Quinn started with the company in Australia 20 years ago - with its customer base across resource, energy, mining, finance, retail, telecommunications and government in Australia and energy and manufacturing, with some retail and finance, in New Zealand.

“We are rekindling those relationships and joining those clients on that journey they have regarding whatever requirements they have in their traditional environment as well as the requirements they have in this digital world that everyone is trying to get on top of,” Churches says.

“Tibco is back with a bang,” he says. “2017 is going to be spectacular year and we know it already because the industry analysts are confirming it, our customers are confirming it and our channel partners are confirming it.

“They like the message they’re getting and the forward view we’re giving them about what is coming in our pipeline and I’m as bullish as I’ve even been in the opportunity to take a message to market.”

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