Workflow specialist InConcert Inc is launching its newly-styled workflow applications business into Europe, and hopes to see 30% to 40% of its revenues from outside the US in the next few years. The company was spun off from Xerox Corp’s Xsoft Inc last year (CI No 2,939), and has been reformed under the auspices of Xerox’s New Enterprises division, a venture capital group which has funded the buyout of InConcert and retains 80% of the company. InConcert’s original product was a workflow engine, designed to be used by application developers and systems integrators wanting to incorporate workflow into other applications. The new independent company’s brief is to develop and sell complete workflow systems based around the InConcert engine, and to become a one-stop-shop for customers that want workflow systems, but who no longer have in-house expertise to build them themselves. The idea of the Xerox venture capital businesses is to inject new, entrepreneurial blood into the somewhat fusty Xerox company, which is still viewed principally as a printer and copier company. InConcert’s new management team comes mainly from outside Xerox, and is headed by president and chief executive Jeremy Davis, who joined the company four months ago from Dun & BradStreet Corp’s Software company. Davis believes InConcert distinguishes itself from the competition by catering for very large companies, with low to medium transaction rates rather than high volume client-led transactions, but with complex, project-based systems, aimed at the knowledgeworker rather than simply the clerical user.
The systems are also all for mission critical applications. To date, the company’s engine has been deployed across a very broad spectrum of businesses, but Davis says the company is now going to focus on vertical applications within a few core markets, which will be manufacturing, engineering and telecommunications, with the addition of government in Europe. The types of applications include change orders in engineering systems, to management the re-distribution of changed engineering specifications, or line provision in telecommunications companies. Davis says the aim is to focus on one application area at a time within companies in the core markets. In the US, InConcert already boasts large accounts with AT&T Corp, Compaq Computer Corp and is about to finalize a deal with telecoms giant WorldCom Inc. The company already has European customers including the UK Royal Airforce and Barclays Bank Plc, but most of its European presence so far has been through third party systems integrators such as Electronic Data Systems Corp. It has now opened European offices in the UK, in Slough, Berkshire, and in Dussldorf in Germany. Davis says the company will continue to sell through systems integration partners, particularly to get it into new vertical markets, but it has also established a 15- strong direct sales team in Europe, which will concentrate on its key vertical markets. Davis says the company is responding not only to strong demand from European companies, but also from its US customers which require a European roll-out. The company says Europe will be a very important market, and it could even see up to 50% of its revenues coming from there eventually.