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No. of Recommendations: 3

Hey Gorilla Gamers,

A while back after the Tech Crash of '00, I read some good information about the blazing-fast growth of Siebel Systems and how perhaps its sell-off was overblown... So I did my DD on the company and took a chance by buying some stock (the biggest perceived risk being overvaluation) and it has done wonderfully for me over the very short timeframe of the past 3 months.

Then, upon learning more about Siebel, I read references about Siebel and this "Gorilla Game" investment mindset. I read more about GG, get interested in it and started reading the book.

As I make my way through the book, I begin to get confused about how Siebel could be considered a gorilla. Primarily, I am getting hung up on the requirement of an "Proprietary open architecture".

So, today I got to the section about CRM and ERP software, and I'm thinking "Great! Now they'll show me why a company in this field could be a gorilla."

Well, I finished the chapter, and I'm still confused. Sure, once a company gets set up using Siebel's software, there may be high switching costs to go to someone else. High barriers to entry? Probably. But a proprietary open architecture? I don't see how this can apply in this situation.

Now, I understand that it's probably the case that each and every gorilla doesn't necessarily have to adhere to all of the Gorilla standards, but I would have thought that Siebel might fit into more of a King role than a Gorilla.

Any guidance/thoughts would be appreciated.

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No. of Recommendations: 18

But a proprietary open architecture?

Good question.

Siebel's architecture is theirs and theirs alone. Competitors can't use it. They have to develop their own architecture. Thus, Sibel's software (as well as its competitors') is highly proprietary.

Siebel publishes the specs for free about how to "connect" other software to it, whether it's software that allows it to "talk" to ERP software, other front office software modules marketed by competitors, or any kind of relational database. Thus, it's open and helps the value chain get stronger and stronger, as if the 400 or so partners isn't enough.

Hope this helps clarify that very, very important issue. You're right that there are gorillas of various strength, but a big, hairy beast ain't a gorilla without the proprietary, open architecture. That's a must.

--Mike Buckley

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No. of Recommendations: 3
But a proprietary open architecture? I don't see how this can apply in this situation.

Check out companies such as ACTU that participate in the value chain by selling to SEBL. The fact that ACTU can write software that works with SEBL's products is an example of a proprietary open architecture at work.

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