OpenText to Buy Vignette

Good grief, is it true, did I just type that? So it was Interwoven now it’s Vignette as the grandees of our industry slip into new ownership and possible away.  

It’s really too early to comment and as a vendor in the same space, rather than as a partner or analyst, it’s probably not my place to contribute the insightful commentary that existing customers or prospects need right now. I suggest you stroll over to Jon Mark’s blog  and I am sure folks like CMS Watch and Forrester will have something cooking for us in a minute… But, someone suggested I comment and as a shocked Vignette alumnus, I am…

It is of course arguably bleaker for Vignette compared to Interwoven as there is clearly wiggle room for the core Interwoven WCM to add value at Autonomy, with the clashing happening around some of the more recently acquired and (dare I say) more peripheral products. The early commentary of it being about a legal customer acquisition were soon disproved as they were fairly quick to start to talk about discovering meaning through IDOL to deliver better content (although that’s a big old beast for someone to tame!).

Not so much Vignette, as the voracious appetite for CMS systems and their customers at OpenText seems unfulfilled and I can’t imagine that previous history being much comfort to the hard working folks from Austin or Maidenhead, which can only be sad for the WCM business and less choice for our future prospective customers.  As I say, very early to comment, be interesting to see what comes out of these organisations in the next few weeks and months ( here’s the official press release for starters). 

On the other hand and in contrast to the Interwoven acquisition, the peripheral bits that have come more recently to Vignette, the portal and social media stuff will be the bits OpenText will (I assume) cherish and nurture. I also have to mention here that in terms of engagement through the social media, Vignette have been doing the right things through folks like Dirk Shaw.

People are are starting to crow about watching this titan’s unbelievable fall, giggling at the state of their finances, bewildered by the product strategy. But, like a faded musician – you have to remember that back in the day these guys really rocked and were there at the birth of our industry. 

I tweeted that it was like realizing for the first time that your Dad was no longer the strongest man in the world, which probably sounded weird abridged to 140 characters. But, for me it’s an odd feeling, I’ll be honest I have been proud when we have closed those major deals having beaten Vignette, but I also have to say I am not exactly ashamed of being an alumnus either.

Crikey, this took a turn I wasn’t expecting and I’d best emphasise my blog disclaimer, these are my own personal views. 

So thanks Vignette and good luck!

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