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PeopleSoft expands suite

Client-server software maker PeopleSoft christens the latest version of its business application software suite PeopleSoft 6.

Client-server software maker PeopleSoft (PSFT) christened the latest version of its business application software suite PeopleSoft 6 today during a corporate extravaganza in London.

With the new version, PeopleSoft has enhanced Internet capabilities and added new technology to support electronic commerce applications. It has also added workflow tools designed for use on corporate intranets and nearly a dozen new applications for financial, distribution, manufacturing, and human resources management.

The version set to ship next month will also include new manufacturing tools that handle billing, routing, planning, and cost and production management, the company said. PeopleSoft is also beta-testing new distribution tools and additions to its financial planning tools.

The London launch served to underscore PeopleSoft's aggressive plans to expand into international markets, touting its products as "global enterprise solutions." The suite will come in seven languages when it ships next month. Financial and human resources applications to support multinational businesses will follow in the first quarter of next year, the company added.

However, several cross-border financial tools are already included in the new package. Hoping to win new clients in European Economic Community, PeopleSoft 6 will support "an unlimited number of base currencies" in the product's General Ledger accounting tool. The feature will allow pan-European operations to perform transactions and consolidations in many currencies.

The company also plans to eventually tie all of its country-specific human resources software together in one product. The latest release includes human resources applications written for operations in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany that will offer multinational companies a single application for deployment in all five countries. The company is also debuting a payroll applications that combines versions written for the French, German, and British markets.

In another indication of its international direction, PeopleSoft recently launched subsidiaries in Japan and Brazil subsidiary. It has established new offices in several European cities and expanded operations in Australia, New Zealand, and Mexico as part of its international expansion plans.

While the suite will hit the streets next month, additional international applications and offerings for local governments and academic institutions to continue to roll out through the second half of next year. Pricing starts at $100,000 per application.