If you think that China only manufactures socks – read on to learn how Chinese software and European Cloud expertise plans to deliver ERP and CRM to mid-sized enterprises in EMEA.

On November 8th, 2011 – the European IT services company ATOS and the Chinese software company UFIDA INTERNATIONAL HOLDINGS, LTD. announced the formation of a Joint Venture, YUNANO™ which will address the growing Cloud market in Europe and China, targeting midsize organizations.

UFIDA is a Chinese software company, registered in Shanghai, which was founded in 1988 and has a focus on software for Accounting, ERP, and CRM. It has around 12,000 employees and has R&D centres in Beijing, Nanjing, Shanghai and Shenzhen. YUNANO which in transliteration means “cloud & safe” will be a software company with a focus on delivering ERP and CRM to mid sized enterprises via Software as a Service. The software will be provided by UFIDA and the SaaS delivery will be provided via ATOS using the ATOS Cloud IaaS and PaaS platforms. The target market will be in EMEA and, since one major concern in this market is the location of data to comply with privacy rules, the ATOS infrastructure is located in Europe. The system integration and any process re-engineering necessary will be delivered through local VARs and these are currently being recruited.

Why is the focus on SaaS and mid-sized enterprises? This area is seen to have a very high growth rate. According to research carried out on behalf of the joint venture in house ERP in mid sized enterprises has only around 3% annual growth forecast, while ERP via SaaS annual growth is forecast to be around 90%. This is because of the ease and convenience that the SaaS model delivers to mid sized enterprises – many of which are subsidiaries of larger organizations and already have to contend with multiple complex systems.

So – does YUNANO intend to replace the likes of SAP and Oracle? The answer given is NO! Their focus is to help mid-sized organizations like L’Oreal who are strongly committed to SAP by providing simple and easy to use solution to their needs without replacing the existing systems.

When will the solution be available? The target is for CRM and ERP software to be localized in English, the initial VARs to have been recruited and for the first sales wins to have been achieved by the end of 2012. French and German localization should be available by late 2012 early 2013.

Will this be a success? KuppingerCole will be monitoring this joint venture over the coming months and will provide updates.