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Epicor acquires Kyklo, adding product info management to ERP

Epicor continues its buying spree with PIM vendor Kyklo, enabling manufacturers and distributors to gain visibility into what customers are buying and why.

Epicor is expanding the functionality of its ERP platform with the acquisition of Kyklo, a provider of product information management software.

Kyklo's portfolio of PIM applications enables manufacturers and distributors to distribute or syndicate content across various channels such as e-commerce sites, catalogs and marketplaces. Manufacturers can use Kyklo to syndicate data about their product lines via B2B commerce applications to their distributors, an attractive selling point for Epicor, according to John Carrico, vice president of product management at Epicor.

This helps the manufacturers market products, but Kyklo also includes business intelligence (BI) capabilities for visibility into what's selling and why.

"When they put their product out and are running it on the Kyklo commerce site, all the distributors that are running it can push that product or updates to the product, and see what's selling at distributors," Carrico said. "By syndicating that content, they can market that across those distributors."

In May, Epicor brought out its Epicor Grow data platform, which pulls together several BI and AI capabilities into its ERP applications. It is designed to help customers make more informed decisions on how to build, distribute and sell their products.

Epicor Grow is built primarily from Epicor's recent acquisitions, most prominently Grow, a low-code/no-code BI development environment Epicor purchased in 2022. It also includes technology from Elite Extra, a last-mile distribution application acquired in 2023; and Smart Software, an AI-based inventory planning and optimization application purchased last month.

Epicor Grow enables customers to take data from their ecosystems, including ERP systems of record and associated applications, to build pipelines for specific use cases such as smart forecasting and inventory optimization, Carrico said.

Kyklo adds product information to applications in the pipeline, he said. Kyklo's software ensures that the data is accurate, normalized and clean across the different applications.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Epicor will own Kyklo, based in Bangkok and New York City, outright, and operations will be integrated into Epicor. Kyklo's applications will be available to purchase as standalone offerings, including Direct Commerce for manufacturers, which includes PIM, and Managed PIM for content management applications, according to Carrico.

Epicor will invest in Kyklo's product development, he said.

PIM handles master data for catalogs

Epicor's strength is that it is making acquisitions that are consistent with its core offerings in manufacturing, distribution and commerce, said Ray Wang, an analyst at Constellation Research.

A good PIM system is the master data for products, and this has the ability to sync with [Epicor's] CPQ [configure, price and quote] to handle content, inventory and price.
Ray WangAnalyst, Constellation Research

"This one with Kyklo in PIM makes it easier for customers to build the product catalogs that are key to commerce," Wang said. "A good PIM system is the master data for products, and this has the ability to sync with [Epicor's] CPQ [configure, price and quote] to handle content, inventory and price."

Adding Kyklo's applications to its platform makes sense for Epicor, particularly when combined with the recent acquisitions of Smart Software and Elite Extra, according to Predrag Jakovljevic, an industry analyst at Technology Evaluation Centers.

This should make Epicor and ERP a force for businesses that deal in automotive parts catalogs, commerce and distribution, he said. The PIM capabilities are important for e-commerce and catalogs.

"PIM for marketing and commerce is as important as product lifecycle management and product data management are for engineering teams," Jakovljevic said. "Propel, the cloud PLM on Salesforce, has long been talking about marrying PLM with PIM so that design engineering and commercial folks are on the same page."

The new Kyklo capabilities likely won't allow Epicor to challenge top ERP vendors, he said, but carving out good functionality for its core customer base of midmarket companies such as automotive spare parts retailers is a good niche for Epicor.

Jim O'Donnell is a senior news writer for TechTarget Editorial who covers ERP and other enterprise applications.

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