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Siebel pitches customers on Oracle

CEO George Shaheen vows "seamless transition" to Oracle and talks up future versions of Siebel applications.

BOSTON--Siebel Systems executives on Monday detailed the company's future product plans and pitched the benefits of the proposed merger with Oracle.

At the company's CustomerWorld conference here, said Siebel's customer relationship management software will be the "centerpiece of Oracle's future CRM offering."

He said the proposed $5.8 billion acquisition will make both companies stronger in the marketplace and pledged to make the transition seamless for customers.

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison delivered a brief taped video message to Siebel customers. He, too, said Siebel's CRM applications will be the foundation for Oracle's post-merger product line.

Ellison also lauded Siebel's work at building a service-oriented infrastructure, or SOA--a flexible, standards-based application design--to underpin its applications.

"We're very excited with what Siebel has done with SOA, and that foundation dovetails beautifully with Oracle's plans for Fusion," Ellison said.

Oracle's Fusion Middleware is the company's standards-based infrastructure software for providing common functions, such as a portal, security and business intelligence.

Even as the company prepares for its merger with Oracle, Siebel executives said the company is working on its next generation of products, which it called customer-adaptive solutions.

Siebel executives said the company is focusing on improving Siebel applications so that knowledge workers have better information when doing customer-facing tasks. For example, a marketing officer would want to analyze sales trends before changing sales territories to maximize sales.

Planned enhancements to Siebel applications include improved analytics, better data integration between different systems and modeling tools for improving customer relations. The company said Siebel Business Analytics 7.8, which adds predictive modeling tools, is available.

As part of its adaptive customer solutions development, Siebel will also deliver a tool called Siebel Component Assembly aimed at rapid application customization by reusing common software components.