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Salesforce Integration Now in Magic's Bag of Tricks

Salesforce.com is the latest addition to Magic Software's roster of applications and services it supports through its iBOLT business integration suite.

Magic's (NASDAQ: MGIC) iBOLT uses a code-free, wizard-based interface to enable users to merge customer data across the enterprise, sharing information between Salesforce.com (NASDAQ: CRM) and other business applications, in real time.

The idea is to help users automate business processes in operations, sales, finance, marketing, online advertising, human resources and management -- without the effort of a full integration.

For instance, sales users might convert lead data into sales orders or funnel captured lead data directly into Salesforce.com. They also could link e-commerce data to sales forecasts, increase the visibility of past-due accounts and sales pipelines for risk analysis, create a single view of customer purchase history or calculate campaigns' return on investment.

According to Magic Software, the task of setting up these sorts of integration is made far simpler owing to the design of its platform.

"Our platform is interoperable and metadata-driven," said Avigdor Luttinger, Magic Software's vice president of corporate strategy. "We invented a lot of stuff 20 years ago but at the time we didn't have the right buzzwords. For example, the word 'metadata' didn't exist, so we called it an application knowledge base."

Magic offers iBOLT as an on-premise installation under a Software as a Service (SaaS) licensing model -- an approach similar that of competitors like Cast Iron Systems, in which vendors provide an on-premise integration appliance that is "basically a configured black-box PC," Luttinger said.

He said Magic eschewed a SaaS-to-SaaS integration solution in favor of an on-premise application that would better address the major obstacle facing customers: the difficulty they faced integrating on-premises with SaaS.

"That's where the customer pain is the highest and where we can provide solutions that are not only painkillers but actually healers, since a byproduct of our solution would be to render those on-premise applications easier to integrate and at least partially [service-oriented architecture]-enable," he added.

"Just imagine what it means to be able to integrate a legacy Unix ERP package that has become a critical asset, with Salesforce.com without a full-blown software development or migration project," Luttinger said.