Universal Music Picks Hyperwave to Power its Portal
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Universal Music International, part of Vivendi's group that will lend its considerable weight to the pending Duet subscription service, will announce Monday that it has tabbed Hyperwave Information Management's software to power its large corporate portal.
Financial terms of the deal were not made public. Universal will use Hyperwave's software to treat thousands of employees to news and other information on the company's single, shared network. The new intranet is being led by the head office of UMI, based in the U.K., which has installed the Hyperwave Information server and will roll out the Hyperwave Information Portal later this year.
As with all knowledge management solutions, the portal is geared to rapidly publish and share information among employees, allowing them to eyeball and use data instantly to speed up business processes. The system will let UMI provide a portal to other Web applications and intranet sites that have been developed within UMI, making the site a gateway to a variety of information. Web designers will create a customized user interface by designing specialized templates for information such as calendars and discussion forums.
Lisa Bond, vice president of communications at UMI, said that at first rollout 50 people at UMI will be contributing to the intranet content at first rollout, with "vast potential for users with write-privileges as the system develops."
The deal is not a first between the two companies, as Universal had already used Hyperwave's knowledge management software in its Hamburg, Germany offices. In fact, UMI had previously tried to forge a group-wide intranet, but needed Hyperwave's server to do the job.
"The Hyperwave product has broken barriers and has gained the confidence of our staff by providing a secure and reliable means to share resources which is really easy to use," Bond said.
"Knowledge sharing" and "collaboration" have been big buzzwords lately around the industry, especially after Microsoft Corp. lit up the media with its Office XP debut Thursday. But those words mean little without corporate portals to back them and May was a huge month in that arena. Software makers Vignette Corp. and BroadVision Inc. launched the Enterprise Application Portal and BroadVision InfoExchange Portal, respectively. IntraNet Solutions joined the Sybase e-Portal Alliance in order to provide a solution that combines content management and access through a portal interface.
Robert Perry, Internet computing strategies analyst with the Yankee Group, said these announcements show the convergence of software solutions for the closely-related areas of content management, application components such as personalization, and corporate portals. While this integration is positive, Perry said some conditions must be met for portal providers to score big.
"...Integrating data from enterprise applications to drive decisions is the more compelling need and greater challenge for portal systems," Perry wrote in a research note. "Most portal solutions simply organize content from a single source into a specified screen area. However, to be successful in the future, portal providers must combine corporate content and knowledge, external information sources, business transactions, and enterprise applications data to provide a uniquely valuable view on corporate performance and business relationships."