BEA Teams Up With Siebel To Promote EAI Strategy

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BEA Systems is teaming up with CRM giant Siebel Systems to promote its application integration software strategy, a company executive said.

The two companies Monday will unveil an alliance to ensure interoperability between BEA's WebLogic Integration 8.1 software and Siebel's Universal Application Network (UAN), said Morris Beton, BEA's vice president of business development.

UAN is a Web-services-based framework that integrates Siebel's CRM software with other applications.

Specifically, Siebel will name BEA a strategic partner in its alliance program and designate BEA's WebLogic Integration, J2EE-based application integration software a premier solution for UAN, Beton said.

In turn, BEA will make the next version of WebLogic Integration 8.1, which is due to be available in August, compatible out of the box with Siebel's UAN. "We have taken WebLogic Integration 8.1 and we have written in all of the [technology] hooks that support UAN," Beton said.

In March, Beton told CRN in an exclusive interview that BEA planned to beef up partnerships with large ISVs to win integration customers. BEA's alliance with Siebel is a part of that strategy, he said.

"I would say a year ago we really weren't doing that much with them at all," Beton said. "Our relationship with Siebel has evolved very significantly over last six months."

BEA and Siebel have been working together with a host of other leading vendors, such as IBM and Microsoft, on various Web services standards. In particular, the four companies jointly submitted a specification, along with 21 other companies, for Business Process Execution Language (BPEL) to standards consortium OASIS. BPEL is a specification for orchestrating multiple Web services to automate complicated business processes between companies.

BEA traditionally had been focused almost exclusively on its application server business. But as that market has been commoditized over the past two years, BEA built out an integrated Java application development platform under its WebLogic brand to tackle end-to-end deployment and development of solutions.

In October 2002 at its annual analyst conference, BEA switched gears again, unveiling a strategy to merge application development and integration with its WebLogic platform. The company also has been recruiting former executives from EAI companies to help take this strategy to the market.

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