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BEA gears up its local operation for intensified competition

The local market may behind in terms of its use of Java, but BEA's enterprise integration business is booming

BEA has carved out a large space for itself in the application serving market and it has the market share and the client list to prove it. At the local level the majority of the middleware player’s business has centred on the company’s enterprise integration capabilities — based around its Tuxedo transaction engine — as opposed to its J2EE based application server business.

The vendor has won several large accounts it the region, including the likes of Etisalat and some other large Saudi banks, but says regional business development manager Diyaa Zebian, the Middle East is “three to four years behind the US in its maturity with Java. 75% of our business in the region has been with the enterprise integration tools,” he adds.

However, faced with intensifying competition on the horizon from the likes of Oracle and IBM, which are both gearing up their software businesses in terms of marketing, headcount and personnel, BEA is facing greater challenges, globally and locally.

Unlike its close rivals, BEA is determined to keep to its server-centric strategy, as opposed to the application-centric strategies of both IBM and Oracle. By remaining server-centric the vendor is able to retain its independent edge and avoid all out competition with some of the bigger players. However, by remaining positioned as a software infrastructure provider the vendor risks losing its visibility and being drowned out by its larger rivals.

While acknowledging the marketing muscle of its competitors, Zebian, believes BEA will retain its early lead in the application server and software infrastructure space and continue to win accounts and mind share. “We’re a great technology provider and we can complete in any account,” says Zebian.

BEA’s local operation is also beefing up its own headcount and partner network in an effort to expand is local presence. “We’re investing more in local support both in terms of headcount and with our local partners,” adds Zebian.

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