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Ariba Appoints New Skipper

Ariba Inc., a leading business-to-business software maker, Wednesday installed Robert Calderoni as president and chief executive officer.

Calderoni is filling in for Ariba Founder Keith Krach, who was playing the role of interim CEO since Larry Mueller departed in July. In true revolving-door tradition, Mueller had only been CEO at Ariba for three months. Krach will remain chairman of Ariba's board.

Calderoni was chosen to spearhead Ariba's current strategy, "Ariba Spend Management," the goal of which is to help firms improve bottom-line results. Calderoni will continue as interim-chief financial officer until a new officer is named. Calderoni was also appointed to Ariba's Board of Directors.

Krach welcomed Calderoni in a public statement.

"Bob's practical experience and leadership has had an immediate and positive impact on Ariba from day one," said Krach. "He has demonstrated solid commitment to customer success; he has inspired our employees; and he has led Ariba's charge to develop and execute our new Ariba Spend Management strategy. With these qualities, I'm confident he is the right leader for Ariba's future."

With his appointment, Calderoni said, Ariba expects fourth quarter revenues to be in the $62 to $63 million range, which is beyond the $59 million estimated by analysts polled by First Call. For his part, Calderoni said he, like many skippers in this economy, would look to cut costs.

"Financial and purchasing professionals have lacked the solutions to help them engage, manage and control their spend," Calderoni said. "While companies can reduce their spending here and there, they need to capture and leverage the widest amount of spending across as many categories as possible to maximize benefits. Our spend management solutions, help companies solve their spend management needs."

Calderoni has high-tech experience dating back several years; he was a senior vice president of finance for Apple Computer Inc., and a vice president and CFO for IBM Corp.'s Storage Systems Division.

Ariba will have a conference call to discuss its earnings on Oct. 24.