Oracle co-president Charles Phillips used his keynote speech yesterday to unveil `Oracle Accelerate' - an expanded small-to-medium sized enterpsies (SME) programme that comprises industry-specific, pre-packed application bundles, rapid implementation tools and a growing network of certified Oracle applications resellers.

Oracle Accelerate's pre-packed application bundles are intended to be rapidly implemented and provide a wide range of industry-specific functionality. Working with the partner community, Oracle has identified 80 product and industry-specific bundles that can help companies quickly take advantage of Oracle's enterprise applications, without sacrificing flexibility and functionality.

“The introduction of Oracle Accelerate expands on our experience in the SMB market, and makes it faster and easier for customers and partners to leverage Oracle's leading enterprise applications,” he added.

Oracle's rapid implementation tools - Oracle Business Accelerators - feature an automated setup tool that configures end-to-end business flows to decrease cost, risk and implementation time. The setup tool captures responses to simple questions about specific business requirements and then automatically applies that information to the application implementation. Once a customer has completed the set-up questionnaire, a new instance can be up and running in hours.

Meanwhile, on the CRM front, Oracle announced general availability of its PeopleSoft Enterprise On Demand and On Demand for Siebel CRM. PeopleSoft Enterprise On Demand applications will enhance human resources, finance, IT, procurement, marketing, services and sales departments of all industries.

Sheryl Kingstone, Yankee Group analyst and enterprise applications and mobility strategies director said: “These new offerings expand the Oracle On Demand portfolio and give customers choice of deployment models, while helping assure Siebel and PeopleSoft users that Oracle will continue to support their investments.”

According to Oracle, the On Demand services deliver enterprise functionality and industry expertise while enabling customers to focus on results because Oracle maintains the responsibility of deploying, managing, and updating the software.

Marc Schwarz, Oracle On Demand senior vice president said, modestly: “This is the natural evolution of on demand and Oracle is leading the charge.”