Infor Signs On with Microsoft Azure Cloud Service, Unveils Infor24
July 13, 2010 Alex Woodie
Infor took another step toward the Microsoft and Windows world yesterday when it announced that it has chosen Microsoft’s Windows Azure to be its preferred platform for cloud computing. Azure will be the platform for Infor24, a new class of cloud-based enterprise software products that are now available. Infor’s System i customers are already taking advantage of Infor’s new Windows cloud-based offerings.
Infor announced its new Windows Azure strategy yesterday at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference, which is being held this week in Washington D.C. The large and influential developer of i/OS-based ERP solutions says it selected Microsoft’s Azure cloud-platform for its flexibility, robustness, and speed to deployment.
Infor is already selling access to several cloud-based offerings through its new Infor24 brand, including Windows-based ERP, expense management, and enterprise asset management (EAM) applications. More Infor24 applications are expected next year, the company says.
Jim Schaper, Infor’s chairman and CEO, says the new Windows Azure-based Infor24 applications will deliver “rich functionality” and “rock-solid dependability” at a good price. “We’ve heard loud and clear from an increasing number of our mid-market customers that they want the benefits of cloud-based services, but without sacrificing reliability or functionality,” Schaper says in a press release. “Infor24 powered by Azure is not only the right choice, it’s the safe choice.”
One of Infor’s i/OS customers is already using Infor24 applications hosted in Microsoft’s Azure data centers. Mohawk Fine Papers, which uses the i/OS-based BPCS application to manage many aspects of its paper manufacturing business, is using the Infor24 EAM application to track its assets and facilities. The software has helped the company to reduce its energy consumption and carbon footprint, according to Paul Stamas, vice president of IT at the Upstate New York company. “We’re thrilled to see Infor’s product roadmap evolve with the Infor24 launch and even closer integration with Microsoft,” he says in a press release.
Infor’s i/OS customers will be able to utilize Infor24 applications through Infor ION, a new integration and business performance management (BPM) application that Infor announced three weeks ago, when Infor initially announced its new Windows direction.
As part of its strategic partnership with Microsoft, Infor has made Windows Server and the SQL Server database the “preferred” deployment stack going forward for Infor applications. While the announcement doesn’t directly impact Infor’s i/OS development strategy (Windows will be the preferred stack only for open-systems applications like Baan and Syteline), it does mean that Infor will be encouraging its 16,000 or so customers who run i/OS-based software to adopt Windows-based solutions and technologies for things such as business intelligence, authentication, portals, and user interfaces. It was also a blow to IBM and its product strategies, which Infor had been aligned with relatively closely.