Sun Microsystems Inc. plans to offer computing solutions called service-oriented architecture, or SOA, in India and aims to have a dozen clients in the first half of 2008.
SOA refers to the modular approach a software or information system is configured and integrated which allow its users to pick and choose features they need, making the system faster and potentially cheaper. It delivers this by a design that separates core functions of the software from other not so critical features.
Sun’s SOA solutions help customers architect, implement and manage their software created based on such an architecture and standards that allow them to work easily with other systems or software. Based on the findings of technology research firm International Data Corp., Sun estimates there is a market worth some $90 million, or Rs354 crore, growing at 38% annually, for SOA offerings in India.
IBM Global Services, a unit of International Business Machines Corp., leads in the SOA marketplace among Indian business customers. Oracle Corp. and BEA Systems Inc. are the other emerging providers in the country.
Although the concept of the architecture has been around for some years now, it has gathered a following in the software world only in the last two-three years.
“We have been preparing for the launch for the last six months and have acquired some early adopters,” said Ross Altman, chief technology officer, SOA and business integration of Sun. “Now we are ready to break out and make it a major effort.” Sun has signed on a leading retailer as its customer, but declined to name it. Sun’s SOA solutions cost between a few hundred thousand dollars and several million dollars.
“A dozen customer for us means millions of dollars worth of revenue not only from the direct software sale but also from revenues from storage and services that will go with that software,” said Altman.
Sun reported around $14 billion in revenues for its last fiscal year to June 2007. Sun has around 2,500 customers using its SOA solutions. “Now the company is making significant investments in emerging markets such as Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Asia to grow its revenue from its SOA capabilities,” said Manish Malhotra, a Sun India software practice director.