i2, InterTrans merger further blends transportation and supply-chain software, pressures Manugistics
The great supply-chain software race entered a new lap last week as i2 Technologies and InterTrans Logistics Solutions talked merger. The software companies agreed to a $97 million stock buyout that will blend the transportation and logistics software of InterTrans into i2's Rhythm supply-chain planning software.
The result will be a set of much more tightly integrated applications that will embed transportation in Rhythm's manufacturing planning and scheduling processes, according to i2 and consultants and analysts alike. And that, they all concur, is what manufacturers want and need.
"In industries such as furniture, apparel and high technology, you can't even think about keeping transportation separate from the business constraints anymore," said John Kirkegaard, vice president of logistics operations for i2. "You just can't be competitive that way."
In the short term, the merger should sharpen i2's competitive edge in its battle with rival supply-chain software developer Manugistics. The Rockville, Md., company just completed an important acquisition of its own, the buyout of ProMira Software last month.
Manugistics and i2 are recognized as the major contenders in the market for advanced manufacturing planning and scheduling software. Advanced Manufacturing Research has estimated that together the two companies have cornered about half that market. "It (the merger) levels the playing field with Manugistics, which already has an integrated TMS solution, one …