Supply chain event management (SCEM) software developer Viewlocity must be doing something right. Last week the firm announced additional funding to the tune of $30 million from new and existing investors. It’s a pretty exceptional award given the downturn in the US and its impact on investors’ confidence in technology stocks. New Viewlocity CEO Jeffrey Simpson says: “It’s huge news in the US… This round of funding is a great vote of confidence from our investors and reflects the stability and maturity of our business as well as the continued growth opportunities.” He says the funds will be used to continue to grow the business, with the focus now on SCEM which, he believes, is the secret is the firm’s success. He also insists the firm is doing more than simply jumping on the SCEM bandwagon, one of the current darlings of the analyst community. Simpson says Viewlocity is building on its heritage in integration technology, which has become “more of a crowded commodity market.” He says that SCEM to him means using the web to create a software layer between the planning systems, “like those of i2 and Manugistics”, and the ERP systems “from whoever”, that unites supply chain companies at an operational level. “It’s well beyond the concept of just ‘visibility’,” he says. “Knowing something happened and taking timely action are two very different things. We’re offering the ability, through a continuous intelligent feedback mechanism, to automatically present manufacturers with the information they need.” So it’s also more than web-enabled workflow, linking specific individuals internally and externally according to pre-configured business rules. And he says that means users of Viewlocity’s brand of SCEM will be able to get into adaptive planning and execution. Says Simpson: “It will be the next great wave of systems implementation… We’re weeks away from clients implementing systems.” Actually though, it’s a grey area: fact is, both i2 and Manugistics – and several others, like JD Edwards, with its Numetrix software, Synquest and the host of fancifully termed supply chain fulfilment (formerly logistics, warehousing and distribution management) software firms – would claim similar functionality. And to date, Viewlocity’s successes with this software have been with the logistics and distribution big boys. There’s going to be a lot of IT vendors knocking on your door with software that purports to do an awful lot of what SCEM is all about – and happily coexists with our existing manufacturing and business management IT investments.