The announcement comes the same day that Yahoo! announces a new focus on its enterprise portal offerings. See related ASP News story on internetnews.com, Yahoo! Makes Big Intranet Push, Jan 9th 2000.
The agreement with Yahoo! marks a relaunch of Corio’s previously announced iView enterprise portal, which was originally due for launch last October. The ASP decided to team up with Yahoo! when those plans fell through. “The technology we were going to use didn’t pan out,” iView product manager James Stocki told ASPnews last week.
“Yahoo contacted us to be the preferred hosting provider for Corporate Yahoo!,” said Stocki. “The benefits we saw in partnering with Yahoo were that they had a well-known user interface. Other portals often say they are like ‘My Yahoo’. This [interface] is ‘My Yahoo’.”
Corporate Yahoo! is a customized enterprise information portal solution based on the widely used My Yahoo! interface. Corio is now Yahoo!’s preferred hosted provider for the Corporate Yahoo! portal.
Corio’s decision to partner with Yahoo! was influenced by the finding that many companies spend a lot of time and money developing their own enterprise portals, only to find that they fail to take off with employees, who still use ‘My Yahoo’ or similar mass market portals as their start page. “This way instead of trying to compete for eyeballs, you are giving them what they want,” Stocki told ASPnews.
He said that Corio already has customers lined up for the new hosted offering, many of whom are already direct customers of Corporate Yahoo!. The first will go live close to Mar 31st.
The advantage of the hosted iView service is that it is a ready-to-go implementation, said Stocki. Direct customers for Corporate Yahoo! must install PortalBuilder, a portal platform co-developed by Yahoo! and Tibco, which launches in a new version today. They must then implement links to their existing installed applications and information feeds.
Since the iView architecture was created to be used with Corio’s enterprise applications as well as other applications, Corio has already created views into those applications as part of its hosted Corporate Yahoo! offering. It is then a simple matter for a company’s portal administrator to define what each user views — for instance, someone in sales can view their outlook calendar and shipping orders.
Although there is also some ability to customize the appearance of the Yahoo interface, Corio wlll discourage clients from deviating too far from the original, Stocki told ASPnews. “For example, if the company is Pepsi and they want a Pepsi look and feel,” he said. “You can change it, but you don’t want to change it too much from what employees are used to.”