Micro Focus International announced an extended range of supported platforms and languages thanks to the formalization of its Micro Focus Migration and Transformation Consortium, MTC, a partner network of about 50 migration specialists.
Each MTC partner focuses on just one or two platforms, with each said to have depth of expertise while the consortium as a whole provides the breadth of platform coverage customers require.
Micro Focus said the MTC has already completed over 570 legacy migrations. Platform coverage includes BS2000, Bull GCOS, DEC VAX, DG, HP3000, ICL VME, Tandem, Unisys A series, Unisys 2200, and Wang.
Popular third- and fourth-generation languages supported include ADSO, Application Master, Assembler, Cobol, CoolGen, CSP, EAE(LINC), Easytrieve, Ideal, Mantis, Pacbase, RPG, Telon and TPF, while proprietary databases such as Datacom, DMS, DMSII, IDMS, IDS2, INFOS, Model 204, PACE, and Supra are also supported.
As evidence of the potential success of the partner ecosystem, Micro Focus pointed to customer Scottish Life, one of the largest insurers in the UK. With the help of Micro Focus and MSS International, the company moved its legacy applications from a proprietary Unisys Clearpath mainframe to a more open hardware and software environment.
Micro Focus said the project was completed within 18 months, on time, within budget, and Scottish Life has halved its IT operating costs as a result. It also claimed that the quality of service has been improved compared to when the applications ran on the mainframe.
Stephen Kelly, former CEO of Chordiant, was brought in as CEO of Micro Focus last May after the company suffered something of a melt-down, which Kelly blames on sales execution. At that time the former CEO had quit after a series of profit warnings and gloomy results.
In a recent Computer Business Review interview, Kelly said: I came in to do a rebuilding exercise. The year before our product revenue had slumped by 15%, and as you know being a software company makes no sense unless you are growing.
Kelly presided over a strategic review to ensure the market for legacy modernization software and services was robust, a review that reassured the firm and its investors. If you look at banks and so on, over 70% of their systems still run on Cobol, said Kelly. We do enterprise applications modernization. In IT there are waves of fashion. Ten years ago everybody was replacing Cobol, but now the trend is to try and get more out of what you have.
CIOs are now having a conversation about how to reduce their maintenance costs and shift some of that to new developments, he said. I also think they are much more business savvy, and conscious of the fact that it is a far more heterogeneous and complex environment.
Last November the company expanded its footprint by buying Spanish firm Hal Knowledge Solutions, a player in applications management that gives visibility into applications and their interdependencies. We bought Hal because it gives you a dashboard of all your enterprise applications: once you populate it, it keeps itself up-to-date, and then gives you visibility into the likes of the impact of changing a line of code, or changing shared processes. It’s a great opportunity, said Kelly.
Founded in 1976, Micro Focus has principal offices in the United Kingdom, the US, and Japan. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and was priced yesterday at 229.8 pence per share. Its low for the year is 60 pence while it has been as high as 261 pence. Revenue for fiscal 2006 was $143.7m.