DWP/Bates Contends for J.D. Edwards’ Account

DWP/Bates Technology is among an elite list of agencies competing for the marketing business of enterprise software giant J.D. Edwards.

Atlanta-based DWP/Bates and its Irvine, Calif., office join Deutsch/LA, Marina del Rey, Calif.; Doremus, New York and San Francisco; Merkley Newman Harty, New York; Leo Burnett, Chicago; and McClain Finlon Advertising, Denver, in the competition for the estimated $25-30 million account.

The incumbent, Neobrands, Costa Mesa, Calif., completes the field.

The review is expected to narrow to three finalists this week. Presentations will be made in mid-August, with a winner named at the end of the month.

J.D. Edwards, which has annual revenue of $1 billion, is one of the Big Four enterprise software suppliers. The other three are Oracle and People Soft in Silicon Valley and industry leader SAP, a German manufacturer with U.S. headquarters in Newtown Square, Pa.

Enterprise software is the complex code used to operate the production, distribution, logistics, procurement, transportation and accounting systems at the heart of corporate America.

In the early 1990s, SAP revolutionized marketing in the highly competitive industry by targeting top corporate executives rather than IT professionals. J.D Edwards responded with a “collaborative commerce” marketing strategy.

More recently, IBM has grabbed market share by promoting e-business solutions.

The entire segment suffered a downtown with the rise of heavily marketed, Internet-based e-commerce solutions.

“The fall of the dot-coms has shifted attention back to software companies like J.D. Edwards and Oracle,” said a new business executive at one of the agencies pitching the business. “The challenge is, ‘How do I get the market’s attention to show how important I really am?’ “