Ray Lane, former president of Oracle, has taken the chairmans reins of SeeBeyond Technology, a rapidly growing application integration software vendor whose products can coordinate data from many sources. The firm already does a healthy business with the federal government, including federal security agencies.
“At Oracle, Ray brought a focus to customer problems and the business opportunity” that resulted in a chance to grow the business by resolving those problems for the database company, said Kathleen Mitchell, SeeBeyonds senior vice president of marketing. At SeeBeyond, hell have the opportunity to do the same thing, she said.
Oracle expanded rapidly during Lanes eight years as president, and grew its applications software into a major part of its business. As an application integration software firm, SeeBeyond is competing against the likes of DataChannel, Interwoven and webMethods. In addition to offering connectors to databases and legacy systems, however, SeeBeyond offers its own set of e-commerce applications, such as e*Xchange for establishing a partner exchange, e*Index for cross-indexing customers and customer addresses, and e*Insight for business data analysis.
After the Sept. 11 attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, SeeBeyond CEO Jim Demetriades said that federal agencies needed to better coordinate data to track potential terrorists. A case in which cross-checking databases would have been helpful was a search of the FBIs Watch List on Sept. 11 vs. scheduled airline passenger names, SeeBeyond officials noted. Two of the hijackers, buying tickets under their own names, were on the FBI list. The SeeBeyond eBusiness Integration Suite and other products can perform such cross-checking.
“We have a team focused on the government sector,” Mitchell noted. Agencies already using SeeBeyonds products include the CIA, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of State, the U.S. Army, the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Post Office and several state governments, she said.
Lane, who has been a member of SeeBeyonds board for four years, decided to take a more active role, given “the tremendous opportunities for companies in this space,” Mitchell said. An entry-level SeeBeyond system is priced at about $250,000, with average sales closer to $400,000 or $500,000, she said.
The 700-employee firm in Monrovia, Calif., was founded in 1989 and anticipates revenue of $182 million to $185 million for its 2001 fiscal year. Revenue in the third quarter, ended Sept. 30, is expected to be $41 million to $42 million, compared with $31.3 million last year. SeeBeyond was headed toward a profitable quarter, until the events of Sept. 11. Now, the company expects to lose 6 cents or 7 cents per share, Mitchell said. SeeBeyond has reduced its staff and cut expenses in anticipation of a weaker fourth quarter than expected, she said.
Lane will remain a partner of venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. He becomes chairman of SeeBeyond immediately.
Mitchell worked with Lane at Oracle for two and a half years as vice president of worldwide marketing and other posts. When she sought to join SeeBeyond, Lane was a board member and told her, “This was a company with a remarkable opportunity before it,” she said.