EMC to offer embedded version of Documentum

EMC hopes to rapidly expand the number of companies that include Documentum inside their apps

EMC is looking to drum up more market share and revenue for its Documentum enterprise content management (ECM) software. The vendor will announce Monday plans to offer a version of the product specifically designed to meet the needs of application vendors so that they can embed Documentum into their software.

The vendor's Documentum bundling deals to date only amount to a "very tiny portion" of overall sales of the ECM software, according to Lubor Ptacek, EMC's director of content management and archiving marketing. Once EMC begins shipping its Documentum OEM Edition in December, it hopes to rapidly expand the number of companies that include Documentum inside their applications.

"Today, virtually every application vendor needs to embed a content repository and content functionality as part of their application," Ptacek said. Software vendors have been building their own content repositories, but they're now hearing from customers that those offerings often don't meet users' needs around security, compliance, audit and storage optimization, he added.

In much the same way that database vendors such as Sybase have generated new revenue and market opportunities by providing embedded products, EMC hopes the embedded version of Documentum will help it establish a presence in areas where it hasn't operated before, such as new industry sectors.

Ptacek stressed that the existing version of Documentum and the upcoming embedded release share the same functions and have an identical application programming interface (API). Where Documentum OEM Edition differs is in its delivery options. For instance, the embedded version isn't as extensible as the enterprise release of Documentum and doesn't include a variety of installation options. The release has also been optimized to run in a "resource-poor environment," making only limited demands on a server's memory and processor, he said.

A Documentum user for eight years, content management technology firm Armedia is one of the beta testers of the embedded version of the software.

Employing 30-plus staff, the company has its headquarters in Atlanta and its main product is Armedia SCM, which sells customers source code management for Documentum. Armedia plans to embed Documentum OEM Edition in its software, according to Jim Nasr, chief executive officer of Armedia.

"The OEM version should help us in creating a more platform-standardized version of our product that we could, in turn, certify faster, thus saving on QA [quality assurance] and certification effort," Nasr wrote in an e-mail interview. "By bundling Documentum and Armedia SCM together, we should be able to increase exposure to both our product and Documentum itself."

One thing EMC has already learned from application vendors is that a company can't force its own pricing model on those firms looking to embed its software, Ptacek said. So, EMC is offering flexible pricing, including options for pricing per user seat or per central processing unit (CPU). All bundling deals are negotiated, meaning it's hard to put an actual figure on how much an individual application vendor will pay for Documentum OEM Edition, he added.

When application vendors purchase the embedded version of Documentum, EMC will also give them access to some of its comarketing, developer and technical support programs.

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