It's only been a couple weeks since my last entry but a lot has happened. First, our push into smart meters is gaining traction. Fred, Keith Hall from GBS, and I flew to Minnesota to visit with a company that does both smart meter infrastructure and analytics. They are currently using Oracle but are having a hard time getting their analytics done in a timely manner. We spent the day with them talking about how we would go about solving their problems and in the end they could see that we offered a solution with our time series that is not available in Oracle and that it would significantly reduce the amount of time it would take to do their analytics. A POC will follow shortly.
A few days after the Minnesota trip II flew to China to meet with a number of IBM teams as well as many of our customers. As I've mentioned before Informix has a huge install base in China and the opportunities are tremendous for us. On this trip I started with a visit with our enablement and support teams in China. Both have been doing a great job driving new business and insuring our customers remain happy. Here's a picture of Young-yi, Guo Rong, Hong Tao, and Ye Xie from our enablement team during dinner the first night:
And here is a picture of one of our lead consultants in China, Lu Chuan on the right, (along with Young-yi and one of the IBM sales reps in China):
The other IBM team I met in China was the E&U research team. They had heard of our success in other parts of the world and wanted to learn more. Yun Wang, an IBM fellow, came to the meeting and after much Q&A came to the conclusion that Informix was able to offer unique technology that was well suited to smart meters and he offered to help us push Informix in China. This is great given that China is just starting to push smart meters in several of their cities.
The rest of the week in China was spent visiting customers in Shanghai, Nanjing, and Shenzhen (if this is Tuesday it must be Shanghai :-) ). The customers I met with ran the gamut from Telco, to banking, to retail. Most of these are major international companies whose business depends on Informix. One of the more interesting meetings was with a large retail bank with branches throughout China. Walking into their development center was like walking into NASA's control center. There were probably 50 floor to ceiling screens showing everything from network connectivity, to onstat output, to weather information. Probably over 100 engineers were seated on this one floor, and with another 10 floors you can imagine the number of people working on development here.
In all cases the customers were very interested to hear about the new features coming in our next release (due in October this year). Depending on their business all found something in the release that was of interest whether in the area of replication, or warehouse, or application development.
Next up in China is a new Informix conference. The last I heard this will probably happen in December and will be comprised of a full day of technical and business. I'll post information here as I learn more.