Saturday, January 24, 2004

Oracle beefs up its Clinical suite with acquisition of SiteWorks

Oracle has acquired SiteWorks Solutions, a vendor of clinical trial management software. SiteWorks products include SiteMinder, which is used by hospitals and research institutions to manage their participation in clinical trials, and TrialMinder, which provides the same functionality for sponsoring pharmaceutical companies and contract research organizations (CRO).

This acquisition makes a lot of sense for several reasons. First, Oracle is one of the few major enterprise applications vendor that even attempts to address the clinical study requirements of life science companies (SAP and Siebel are two others). Second, Siteworks fills a gap in Oracle Clinical. To this point, Oracle's clinical suite has been more of a data management platform than a complete application. Adding Siteworks rounds out Oracle Clinical into a complete application. Finally, there should not be much of an integration challenge for Oracle: Siteworks technology is already Web-based and built on Oracle's 9i database, providing some interesting automation opportunities for users. For example, when a clinician or researcher at an investigative site enters data using Oracle Clinical's existing remote data capture capability, the data is not only available immediately to all authorized personnel, but can also trigger an automatic payment request to the trial sponsor.

Keith Howells, VP of Oracle's Pharmaceutical Applications group, sums it up, "We studied this market area long and hard, and we decided that what our customers needed told us to get a solution quickly rather than however long it would take to get a solution ourselves. We found SiteWorks was far and away the best company."

More details are in Oracle's press release.

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