Rimini Street has announced general availability of support for a wide range of database platforms, including IBM DB2, Microsoft SQL Server, the SAP Sybase family. They have previously supported Oracle and SAP HANA databases and a wide range of applications from those vendors. The range of products they can support is impressive.
They have been in business since 2005, now support 160 of the Fortune 500, and yet I see analysts still talk about them in hushed tones.
Not sure why. Our industry has a long history of “grey” products – Amdahl plug compatibles as options to IBM mainframes in the 1970s. Third party software maintenance around Dun & Bradstreet Software in the 80s. Carrot Ink third party printer cartridges since 1998. Many more. And it is not just in IT – happens in every aspect of life. Consumer Reports and Edmunds regularly report independent garages have more satisfied customers than do dealer service departments.
And if you ask these analysts why Rimini now has nearly 2,000 customers they will say “cut-rate” pricing. True, but they are actually missing the bigger part of the story.. Rimini has evolved the software maintenance “product”. They support customizations which no original software publisher (to my knowledge) ever bothers do. In doing so, Rimini cuts in to outsourcing support clients have to support such customizations. Rimini offers a dedicated support rep. Customer after customer reports their ticket volume actually goes UP after they leave the original publisher. It is so much more pleasant to request service from them than it was of the original vendor.
In doing so, Rimini has defined its own version of grey. But customers are using it to paint their own shades of grey. So, as vendor products approach end of life status and their next-gen products are still not mature, I see customers use Rimini as a “bridge” for a few years.
Markets love choice. And who doesn’t love a wide palette of color?
(Cross-posted @ Deal Architect)