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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Interview with DynamicsAnywhere Executives

Back at the start of this year, I did an interview with DynamicsAnywhere' - Joop van Voorthuijsen. In that interview, we talked about what Exactly DynamicsAnywhere was, what is offered, it's plans etc.

The full interview can be viewed here.: An interview with DynamicsAnywhere - Joop van Voorthuijsen

Now I have had another (virtual) sit down with Joop, to talk about the progress that has been made by DynamicsAnywhere, where things stand, how things are going, and the future.

The following is the result of that interview.:

Joop's LinkedIn Profile

1. Joop, Dynamics Anywhere seems to be in full swing since it's launch and are last interview. Can you give some highlights about recent developments for DynamicsAnywhere? How do these apply to customers and partners?

"The first half of 2010 has been used to put us ‘’on the radar’’ of the Microsoft Dynamics AX and NAV partners. We started by having a booth at Convergence Europe in November last year, Convergence US in April, Decisions in June and of course WPC 2010 in July. It has been going much faster than we could have imagined. Together with other activities like Newsletters and Live-meeting webinars, we generated contacts with over 100 partners and already more than 100 customers.

Our team has doubled in growth since October last year and we now have a full R&D team focusing on developing our frameworks and pre-configured apps for AX and NAV. Through the opening of our subs in the US covering North America and in Denmark covering the Nordic region we now have teams dedicated to EMEA, Nordics and North America. Our next goal is to establish a sub covering Asia Pacific so that we can service all continents. Although we focused the first half year mainly on partner recruitment, we also closed a number of deals and now have over 500 users ordered for our AX Anywhere solutions.

At this moment, more than 20 partners have been trained in our AX solution; their feedback and evaluations have been great. As an example, read the following statement from one of our trained partners about our AX solution : ''Excellent performance, sophistication and simplicity. The framework provides easy-to-use functionality, while taking care of very complicated functions''

Also in the last months we have enhanced our solution to support more browsers. Since June we support also Safari and Firefox besides of course Internet Explorer. Many Dynamics customers are having devices with the Safari and Firefox browser. From now on we can also deploy on devices like iPhone and iPad!

Bjarne Schøn (Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland), Mike Wijas (USA and Canada) and Eddy van de Lagemaat (All other countries) are mainly responsible for recruitment of new partners and partner account management. and Bjarne Schøn has been in charge of Dynamics Mobile at Microsoft"

2. What has been some of the biggest challanges that DynamicsAnywhere has faced in getting traction for taking off, and how did DynamicsAnywhere overcome those challanges?

"For ISV’s, one of the biggest challenges is building a channel. We have overcome this challenge by hiring experienced people like Eddy van de Lagemaat who used to be Partner Account Manager at Microsoft in the Netherlands for many years. Together with my background as co-founder and former CEO of To-Increase, we have a great network within the Dynamics community. This helped us a lot in building our channel."

3. It's been publicly released that Bjarne Schon, formely a Microsoft employee and responsible for Microsoft Dynamics Mobile joined DynamicsAnywhere. Can you tell us a little bit about what Bjarne has brought to DynamicsAnywhere so far, and what you expect is role and leadership will do for DynamicsAnywhere in the future?

"We are very happy having Bjarne in our team. He has a lot of expertise in the mobility area (R&D, Go-To-Market, Channel, etc), and a great network both within Microsoft and the Dynamics Channel. These things will help a lot in getting extra traction. It is also a great confirmation of our strategy that Bjarne decided to join Dynamics Anywhere."

4. From an implementation point of view, can you give us some insight into current or recently deployed DynamicsAnywhere solutions for Microsoft Dynamics AX? Can you tell us about the partner and customer experience in these referenced implementations?

"Over the past months, we have sold our solutions to more than 10 customers. From these customers, about 50% are already live with our software. An average implementation takes 5 to 10 days. The fact that our solutions are written in Microsoft Dynamics AX and NAV makes it a super easy for both partners and customers to implement the solution.

We have developed something we call an “ROI Calculator” – This tool partners enable partners to work with their customers to assess the benefits they will get from implementing our mobile solutions and so far our assessments show that customers typically get an ROI after 6-9 months which is extremely short in the IT-industry!"

5. In regard to Microsoft Dynamics AX 6.0, current due '2011', what to you feel will change in the base, that will alter DynamicsAnywhere solution? Will it allow DynamicsAnywhere to be more flexible and offer more functionality?

"The way we have developed our Framework makes it easy to migrate to new releases of Dynamics AX. As the Framework does not depend much on AX functionality, we will have our new Framework soon available after Microsoft Dynamics AX 6.0 is launched."

6. Tell us a little bit about DynamicsAnywhere plans as a company? Will you be expanding to an office in the U.S., or other parts of the world? Do you plan on targeting the APAC region?

"For an ISV, building a channel is one of the most important investments. Based on my experience as co-founder and CEO of To-Increase, we have developed a strategy where we go worldwide as quickly as possible. We already opened offices in the US (Chicago) covering North America and Denmark, because I believe in local presence to get the business going.

The Danish office covers the Nordic region and is led by Bjarne Schon, formerly responsible for Dynamics Mobile in Microsoft. At this moment we have a lot of interest from the APAC area also. We plan to open an office in APAC beginning 2011. In this way, we have coverage in the world’s biggest and most important areas. "

I also asked Joop and Bjarne to give closing statements, below are those statement.:
"’Looking at the most recent reports from Gartner, IDC and AMR we see Mobility becoming more and more important to companies and consumers. It is the fastest growing topic on the top-10 list of IT directors. We also see many partners using our mobile solutions as a differentiator to position themselves better for both existing but also new customers.

Many competitors don’t have an integrated solution. So, for our Microsoft Dynamics partners we offer a great opportunity to strengthen their offering to their existing and new customers!

Let me leave you with these 3 quick facts that can make your “head spin”:

a) By 2013 more than 1/3 (1.2 Billion) of the global workforce will be so-called “mobile workers” – i.e. spending a significant amount of time away from their desk!

b) Today on average only 15% of the employees in a company use the ERP system. The remaining 85% are often found in Manufacturing, Warehousing, Sales, Service and Distribution!

c) In December 2010 there will be more than 5.1 Billion mobile devices in use on a global scale – more than ANY other technology or solution EVER in history!

Now imagine the benefits and opportunities companies will get when their mobile workforce starts to connect their mobile devices to the ERP-system and begins reporting in real-time from the shop floor, the dock-door, at customers and on the road!

The technology is mature, our solutions are here and the need is there!"

"’Looking back at almost 9 fantastic years at Microsoft’s R&D center in Copenhagen where I had the privilege of starting up Dynamics Mobile and 4 other business areas (2 funded directly by Steve Ballmer) I realize that somewhere on the way I got stung by the “Mobile Bee”.

I find everything that has to do with mobility and mobile solutions super interesting and inspiring – the tremendous impact mobility will have on people, processes and companies has only just started and it is only the imagination that will set the limits to what it can be used for.

When I met Joop for the first time 8 years ago I was deeply inspired by his entrepreneurship and business acumen. Now 8 years later being asked to work with him and the great team at Dynamics Anywhere to build a company in the area that I am so passionate about was a fantastic opportunity. Topping it off with the fact that I would remain connected to Microsoft, working with the AX & NAV product lines and the Dynamics channel was a dream come true. The opportunities with mobile solutions are growing every day – I think the “3 quick facts that can make your head spin” above are a good testament of exactly that."

I would like to thank DynamicsAnywhere, Joop and Bjarne for taking the time to virtuall sit down and complete this interview.

I think what DynamicsAnywhere brings, is exactly what Microsoft wanted the partner community to bring, when they canceled the Mobile Dynamics Solutions.

DynamicsAnywhere enables web based publihsed interactions, that can be consumed on most any mobile device, and wokr directly with AX data and business logic. I am very excited about the work they are doing, and look forward to hearing more and more from them in the future.

That's all for now, but check back soon as more to come!

"Visit the Dynamics AX Community Page today!"

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good work by the guys from Dynamics Anywhere. I love their commitment and it is a great added value to my Value Proposition for Existing Customers as well as New Business cases.

- AX partner

8:27 AM  

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