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iPhrase: Eliminating Spreadsheets and Achieving Exponential Growth

iPhrase (prior to being acquired by IBM) was expecting to grow. When it was first looking for a solution, there were only a few customers, but the pipeline was filling rapidly and with major accounts, so there was an immediate need to implement robust financial management processes and infrastructure. Steve Wietrecki, CFO explained: “In the beginning, it was easy to use spreadsheets and a desktop accounting package because budgeting was rudimentary, financial reports consisted of just the basics, and the GL structure was simple-we had a single cost center. One of my first tasks as we built the organization, was to put a structure in place that would provide a better sense of the business and what kind of resources we needed to grow.”

At the time it was looking to upgrade its financial infrastructure, iPhrase used a number of different approaches for pricing. Its software could be sold on a per CPU basis, or by site, by user, or as an enterprise license. There were also a number of modules that customers could buy to extend the functionality of the platform. They hadn’t even begun to consider some of the business model changes they would make after the upgrade was completed and how the system might support the new revenue streams.

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