Microsoft, Lotus Claim Victory in IDC Findings

Market research firm IDC released its annual report on messaging and collaboration Tuesday, concluding that the market is growing in number of seats but shrinking in revenues.

According to IDC, revenues from Integrated Collaboration Environments such as Microsoft Exchange/Outlook and Lotus Domino/Notes, reached about $1.639 billion in 2001. IDC projects that those revenues will fall to $1.578 billion in 2002 and to $1.420 billion in 2003.

At the same time, the number of users of such messaging and collaboration environments is supposed to grow from 210 million in 2001 to 240 million in 2002, IDC finds.

"Integrated collaborative environments have dominated corporate messaging and collaboration for the past five years. The degree to which this will still be true five years from now will depend on how well ICE vendors address customers' emerging needs in the areas of wireless/mobile access and Web services, as well as the ongoing need to reduce the total cost of ownership," Mark Levitt, vice president of IDC's Collaborative Computing program, said in a statement.

Microsoft and IBM each hurried to spin the report as positive news for the respective messaging and collaboration platforms.

Microsoft, which recently claimed it has sold 109 million Exchange seats and that 41 percent of its customers are using Exchange 2000, found good news in IDC's finding that Exchange seats outnumber Domino/Notes seats for the first time.

IDC reports that Exchange has 39.4 percent of the install base to Lotus' 35.2 percent. In the 2001 report, Lotus enjoyed 38.7 percent of the install base. Microsoft also saw 30.4 percent growth year-over-year in its install base.

Paul Flessner, senior vice president of .NET Enterprise Servers, said in a statement that the year-over-year growth shows that "in a slow economy … enterprises are choosing Microsoft for its best-of-breed technology.”

Lotus, however, continues to hold a substantial lead in revenues, according to IDC, with Lotus accounting for 49 percent of all revenues.

"Our focus on selling to corporations and government enterprise type of accounts" is working, says Ed Brill, senior manager for messaging solutions at IBM Lotus. "We continue to lead the market on revenue, and we gained one percent of revenue share as the market size overall fell."

IDC ranked Novell Groupwise behind Microsoft and Lotus in revenue, ability to gain share, new users, total users and market opportunity alignment.

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.