Infor looks serious about its plans to become a leading cloud services company. Today the ERP supplier announced an agreement to acquire GT Nexus, a provider of cloud supply chain and procurement software that counts adidas Group, Caterpillar, Home Depot and Pfizer among its 25,000 customers.
The two companies expect the $675 million purchase to close within 45 days, pending regulatory approval.
The GT Nexus network integrates directly into order management systems of buyers and suppliers, allowing buyers to transmit order information to their suppliers, financial institutions, freight carriers, and logistics providers. GT Nexus then manages the master record of the order across multiple partners. GT Nexus also facilitates more than $20 billion in payments between buyers and their suppliers in 90 countries and in eight currencies.
"Together, Infor and GT Nexus will provide customers with unprecedented visibility into their supply chains to manage production and monitor goods in transit and at rest," said Charles Phillips, CEO of Infor, in a statement.
Sean Feeney, CEO of GT Nexus, said in a statement that his company is "excited to join forces with a company with a strong manufacturing, retail and supply chain pedigree."
Infor will gain $150 million in cloud revenue and 100,000 users across 66 countries through the acquisition, note Ray Wang and Guy Courtin of Constellation Research, writing on the Software Insider blog. The purchase will go a long way toward making Infor "a true cloud solution powerhouse," they write.
There is overlap among the companies' customer bases. Infor says it has more than 3,200 customers in the fashion and retail verticals, many of which also use GT Nexus. Adding Infor CloudSuite technology to the GT Nexus network will enable those companies to integrate merchandising, marketing and demand data, according to Infor.
Buying GT Nexus will accelerate Infor's efforts to further build out its retail business, say Wang and Courtin. Their take: "GT Nexus has addressed a wide array of retailer issues. From better supplier relations to cross channel order management, the GT Nexus platform has been tackling major issues facing retailers. This focus on the retail supply chain is an important piece of the Infor puzzle."
GT Nexus has an architecture similar to that of the Infor CloudSuite. Both have a single canonical map for orders, are event driven, and make use of open source components, according to Infor. In particular, it touts the canonical map, which allows suppliers to join the network once and talk to all buyers, instead of implementing custom maps and portals for each buyer. Infor deploys its applications primarily on the Amazon Web Services cloud and open source platforms.
The GT Nexus cloud software will also help Infor appeal to companies interested in deploying two-tier ERP systems, a trend growing in popularity thanks to cloud ERP. In two-tier ERP strategies, companies typically deploy cloud ERP to supplement their on-premise ERP systems from vendors like Oracle and SAP.