IBM and Versata Speed Business-to-Business Web Application Development with New Rules-Based Software

Alliance Helps B2B Companies Increase Productivity and Reduce Time To Market

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WEBSPHERE - 28 Mar 2000: MIAMI, March 28, 2000 -- IBM today unveiled software that enables businesses to adapt rapidly to changing market needs by providing an integrated development environment for fast, flexible deployment of transactional Web applications.

With this newest member to IBM's VisualAge* application development family, developers -- even those with little or no Java** programming experience -- are able to quickly build and deploy rules-based applications for e-business, which can help increase productivity and reduce time to market.

The new toolset, VisualAge Application Rules, is a result of an alliance between IBM and Versata Inc, announced last fall. It brings together Versata's Workbench with IBM's VisualAge for Java and WebSphere* Studio for a robust business rules development environment, and Versata's Logic Server with IBM's WebSphere Application Server to deliver core business processes to the Web.

"With business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce transactions expected to reach $1.4 trillion by 2003, (IDC Research) speed-to-market will be critical, and the ability to quickly build and deploy Web applications is essential to the success of any e-business strategy," said Paraic Sweeney, vice president, Business Transformation, IBM Software Group. "VisualAge Application Rules is a comprehensive development environment that can enable customers to quickly develop B2B applications and seamlessly deploy them in a WebSphere environment."

Today's announcement builds on IBM's end-to-end strategy for B2B e-commerce (one business exchanging goods and services with many trading partners) and e-marketplaces (a subset of B2B e-commerce for many-to-many exchanges). IBM's strategy incorporates a complete portfolio of software and services to support core B2B processes and the integration of those processes with those of trading partners. IBM and its Business Partners provide products and services that address both areas. IBM's relationship with Versata and this new VisualAge Application Rules toolset can help B2B customers manage their core rules-based processes and allow them to adapt to changes more easily.

"The exploding B2B market demands solutions that can turn on a dime. We're delighted that IBM has selected the Versata technology as the foundation for VisualAge Application Rules," said Mike Devries, vice president of marketing for Versata. "IBM's announcement of VisualAge Application Rules is another important validation point for our business rules automation technology."

VisualAge Application Rules, coupled with IBM's complete line of tools and middleware, is targeted at Web developers focused on the business-to-business market as well as other business models such as Customer Relationship Management and Supply Chain Management.

"VisualAge Application Rules, with its ability to declare and execute business rules, provides a highly adaptable programming environment," said Steve Garone, program vice president for Application Development & Deployment at International Data Corporation. "As businesses look for ways to quickly address changing e-business and B2B requirements, VisualAge Application Rules provides a powerful approach that allows them to better leverage the respective skills of both domain experts and programmers."

VisualAge Application Rules automatically can generate up to 90 percent of the code for e-business applications, so customers can focus on business and spend less time on the complicated details of building and deploying Web applications. This toolset allows companies to leverage their existing technology skills and assets to deploy e-business applications. The tight integration of the VisualAge family and the WebSphere Application Server will allow companies, with varying skills and assets, to maximize their resources.

"As an international IT service provider with clients primarily in the financial, telecommunications, entertainment, manufacturing and government sectors, speed
to market is a critical success factor, " said Victor Friedman, executive vice president Computer Generated Solutions, Inc.

"We are always seeking innovative ways to bring new applications to the market quickly for our customers, especially e-business applications. We've looked at
numerous rules-based development tools. IBM's VisualAge Application Rules, which is based on the Versata technology, is definitely the most comprehensive
development environment of its type that we've seen. It's a great tool and an excellent fit for our business and those of our customers."

Versata, Inc., (formerly Vision Software Tools) helps customers capitalize on e-business. Versata has helped hundreds of customers worldwide build and
automate their business-to-business Web applications. IBM and Versata partnered to extend Vision Software's solution with one of the industry's most scaleable, reliable and robust application server. VisualAge Application Rules joins VisualAge Generator in IBM's portfolio of rapid application development tools that help customers build flexible, standards-based applications that can grow and adapt with the changing marketplace.

Pricing and Availability

VisualAge Application Rules will be available on Windows NT, IBM AIX and Sun Solaris. The US English version of this product will be generally available in the second quarter of 2000, with a National Language Version to follow shortly after. Other languages will become generally available approximately six weeks after the English version. VisualAge Application Rules will be sold through the IBM sales force with the assistance of IBM's Business Partners. Pricing details will be announced in conjunction with general availability.

To learn more about VisualAge Application Rules please contact your local IBM sales rep or visit IBM on the Web at or

IBM Corporation
IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. IBM Software offers the widest range of applications, middleware and operating systems for all types of computing platforms, allowing customers to take full advantage of the new era of e-business. The fastest way to get more information about IBM software is through the IBM Software home page at

Versata Inc.
Versata Inc. (Nasdaq: VATA) provides software and services that enable customers to rapidly deploy e-business software applications that can be modified quickly to meet constantly changing business requirements. The Versata E-Business Automation System utilizes a unique business rules automation technology that redefines how companies create, deploy and modify the critical e-business software applications used to transact their online business. Versata's customers include Fortune 1000 companies such as MCI, ITT Fluid Technologies, Hilton Hotels, and J.P. Morgan as well as e-commerce customers including,, and

Versata is headquartered in Oakland, California, with offices throughout the United States, Europe and Hong Kong. For more information, please contact Versata at or call 1-800-984-7638.

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*Indicates trademark or registered trademark of International Business Machines and its subsidiaries

** Java and all Java-based marks and trademarks are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the

United States, other countries

NOTE TO EDITORS: Camera-ready artwork of the Versata logo can be obtained on the Versata media relations Web site at Copies of previous Versata press releases and additional corporate and product information are also available on the Web site

Versata has filed for several trademarks, including the Versata E-Business Automation System"!, the Versata Logic Server "!, the Versata Studio "!, and the Versata Connector "!, as well as the Versata logo. All other company and product names mentioned are property of the respective holders.

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