Panmure Gordon analyst comments on Imaginatik – 7 Nov 08
Posted by Bryan Mahoney on November 8, 2008
From Panmure Gordon newsletter – from analyst George O’Connor – published Fri 7 Nov [Note: he was an invited guest at our user forum].
Imaginatik (IMTK.L, Mkt Cap £3.9m)
We spent a few hours at the Imaginatik European end user conference yesterday. In our view this was a well-attended event with participants from a range of blue chip companies. The event is part technology showcase, user forum but also a feed for Imaginatiks sales pipeline. We admit to being fanboys of collaborative platforms –it is early in the adoption cycle but for us there is much momentum around concepts like ‘crowd sourcing’ and tools to enable distributed workforces and we still have along held view about geographic comparative advantage in the corporate setting. Indeed, remembering from our education there are good illustrations of working collaboration – think peer review – and look into industries like engineering and manufacturing (think Aveva’s PLM offer) and there are many commercial illustrations too. Disappointingly, the company investment case is stymied as Imaginatik is too small and too illiquid for the mainstay of institutional investors. While we admit to being concerned about the outlook for ‘innovation’ in a downturn we are more relaxed given the company’s ‘heavy’ emphasis on ‘process management’ – investors with memories stretching back to the formation of the business process re-engineering (BPR) movement are aware that downturns are fertile for companies preaching a ‘do it this way message’. There are lots of positives in Imaginatik – producising the CEO remains an opportunity and we still think that the front end – or addressing user generated content – is still also a big opportunity. To remind Imaginatik is a leader in the provision of Innovation and Collaborative Problem Solving software and processes. The ongoing client base includes Nokia, Chevron, Pfizer, Kraft, Cargill, GE Aviation and Lexmark. In truth, Imaginatik is a useful play on IBM websphere and Lotus groupware technology. The ‘smarts’ should be the back end process. We like the practical use of industry standard tools and solving a business need and the tactic of working with HR departments on general Human Capital Management (HCM) approach. While this is an interesting niche we highlight that groupware tools are more pervasive, as indeed are collaboration and project management tools including ‘out of the box’ from Microsoft. In addition companies are increasingly using social networks in an enterprise setting.