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NetSuite launches application store

The software-as-a-service (SaaS) vendor has launched a new developer network aimed at building specialist, vertical applications on its platform, in the cloud.

NetSuite, the software-as-a-service (SaaS) vendor, today updated its partner proposition to build up its own application store in the cloud.

The vendor has consolidated existing components of its software platform and tools, alongside new support resources, to help the independent software vendor (ISV) develop integrated applications with vertical functionality on top of NetSuite.

Craig Sullivan, NetSuite international products vice president, told IT PRO this so-called 'SuiteCloud' platform as a service (PaaS) would capitalise on the SaaS infrastructure it has already developed to deliver its own accounting, enterprise resource planning (ERP) and e-commerce software.

"Our position on the platform-as-a-service concept is to develop vertical functionality on top of our business software suite," he said. "We want SuiteApp.com to become a purchasing platform for our customers and a marketplace for our ISV solutions."

In addition to the launch of SuiteApp.com today, the vendor has boosted its existing ISV resource with the launch of the SuiteCloud Developer Network (SDN).

SDN is its updated developer programme, designed to help ISVs develop vertical point software products on top of, and integrated with, NetSuite's Business Operation System (NS-BOS) and bring them rapidly to market.

Ian Finley, senior analyst at AMR Research urged companies particularly already using NetSuite to put SuiteCloud on their list of PaaS providers.

"SuiteCloud's NS-BOS has a built-in integration advantage over competitors," he said. "NetSuite provides a [SaaS] application foundation that pure platform providers lack and, most importantly, a pool of thousands of customers already committed to it."

Sullivan added that NetSuite would continue to fill out the core functionality of its own software, but that technology tools and marketing resources would be made available to ISVs in a more formal way to build "specific, point, vertical functionality on top of our software".

One example of a SuiteCloud offering has been developed by UK ISV, Postcode Anywhere. It allows NetSuite users to automatically populate forms using an application that links the UK firm's address verification capability in with fields in the NetSuite software.

Other ISVs have developed applications to extend the functionality of the software to handle manufacturing, retail or other vertically related specific processes.

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