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How's this for irony: A mutual fund company, which makes money for its customers by evaluating the health of public companies, finds it's lacking the tools to analyze its own business practices in all their number-crunching minutia.
Irony might be trendy among the MTV crowd, but at Oppenheimer Capital, in Manhattan, N.Y., irony was a problem.
Oppenheimer was definitely doing something right. The Wall Street financial services company presided over more than $40 billion in assets, managing huge sums for its many institutional investors. But what was working and when? The accounting system that fund managers relied on to chart performance could report only on broad sections of the company's intricate financial web.
Inflexible reporting, lengthy processing times, and an uncommunicative host-based system meant trouble for a company that had spent the last few years watching the assets it managed continue to grow and grow. Oppenheimer needed a way to give its accounting system the capability to focus on the big picture yet still have the flexibility of a zoom lens.
The company found what it was looking for in a client/server financial software package from SQL Financials Inc., in Atlanta, that let Oppenheimer view its financial data as a panorama or a close-up.
"What we're heading …