First new-product release since the IMS Health-Cegedim Relationship Management acquisition
In the next few days, according to IMS Health sources, the company will take the wraps off Mobile Intelligence 11, the next version of MI 10, which had been the flagship sales-force automation (SFA) tool for Cegedim Relationship Management, prior to its acquisition by IMS Health. That platform, along with Veeva’s iRep and related SFA offerings, are the two leading SFA tools in pharma sales operations globally (there are quite a few smaller players).
Cegedim and Veeva had been engaged in a tit-for-tat battle for market dominance, with Cegedim the more established player and Veeva the faster grower in recent years; according to various market studies, Veeva now dominates in the US, but Cegedim still has a substantial installed base, claiming users in 125 countries. Veeva was the first to go with a purely cloud-based SFA offering; Cegedim followed with its own cloud-based version and then was the first to adapt its SFA platform to Microsoft technology, including the Microsoft Surface tablet, which Veeva followed.
Craig Fiebig, VP marketing at IMS Health, says that MI 11, through its native HTML5 enhancements, will have more flexibility in being rapidly integrated with other applications of value to field sales reps. Integration with Microsoft Exchange, for messaging and data synchronization, is one component cited. Both Cegedim and IMS Health had been busy in developing advanced analytics and other tools that can be used in conjunction with basic SFA; Fiebig says that there will be “multiple releases” in coming months of these tools and their interfaces to MI 11. He adds that the deep integration of applications with MI 11 will address a not-uncommon experience of sales reps: losing Internet access while on a sales call, such as within healthcare offices at hospitals where Wi-Fi is restricted. “The time spent in front of a prescribing physician is so precious; you don’t want to lose your ability to provide essential information at that moment,” he notes.
Overall, MI 11 is expected to be a “superset” of MI 10, including all of its capabilities plus the new applications coming online. Pricing and contracts will more or less follow Cegedim’s pattern, says the company.