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Published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on April 12, 2000. All rights reserved.
New in Town: German Software
There’s more than one way to outsource. Many Princeton
area software consulting companies outsource to locations in the East,
in India and Pakistan. But two European software companies — Astra
and DMC — are setting up their North American offices at Tamarack
Circle and promising outsourcing to Germany.
SAP is the most popular business software in the world for enterprise
resource planning — financial, human resources, production, warehousing,
sales and distribution — all in one suite. SAP has probably 35
percent of the market in enterprise resource planning (ERP).
Both Astra and DMC specialize in SAP software. Both plan to work with
clients in North America but will outsource some of the work to their
home offices in Germany versus building it from scratch.
DMC, based in Munich, has no connection with the rock group by a similar
name. "DMC’s expertise with production optimizing products such
as Orion makes us unique in optimizing production line scheduling,"
says Alan D. Bachand, national sales manager. Another SAP related
product is CAPP Knowledge, for more reliable capacity planning and
DMC also does turnkey solutions and consulting in E-business and with
such programs as Microsoft, Oracle, and SAP. Bachand says his clients
include Avon, BMW, Philip Morris, Siemens, and Adidas. Also at this
location is DMC’s sister company, TIA.
A native of Canada, Bachand went to Bishop’s University, Class of
1985, and has had sales jobs at radio stations, an export company,
and for SAP, based in Waldorf, Germany. His wife is a manager at a
Canadian resort, and they are planning to move to Princeton. Bachand
is hiring SAP programmers to work at client sites in Massachusetts,
the Carolinas, Atlanta, and Rye, New York. "We are very successful
in the U.S. and Germany, and business is booming down here," he
Skillman 08558. Alan Bachand, national sales manager. 609-683-9362;
fax, 609-683-8837. Home page: www.dmc-kgc.com.
When an SAP specialist arrives to reengineer a company, the reception
is not always warm. "Suddenly we are there and they don’t like
it," says Joseph Aschbacher, president of Astra USA LLC. "They
fear that the computer will do their jobs. But that is a first hurdle
you have to jump over, to find a compromise between what the people
want to do and what the company wants to do."
Aschbacher opened an American office of Astra last September in Chesterford,
and moved it to Montgomery Knoll in February. He is doing SAP consulting,
process automation, and software development. He has one project near
Cleveland and is hiring for client sites elsewhere. "A lot of
chemical companies have subsidiaries in Germany, and these are our
customers," says Aschbacher. "We hope that they are customers
Aschbacher grew up on a farm in the southern part of Austria and studied
electronics and communications science at Technical University in
Graz, Austria. He was a plant manager and a hardware developer for
company that develops efficient motors and has a subsidiary that does
blood analyzers. He says he developed the hardware to make that device.
His wife works as an office manager in Bordentown, and their two children
have dual citizenship. Of his seven siblings, two of his brothers
founded Astra and he and the third brother also work for Astra.
The Aschbacher brothers have another dream: to build a heating plant
with woodchips that will supply cities and townships. Though several
such plants have been built in Europe, only one example exists in
the United States. The town of Yeadon, outside of Philadelphia, is
the only place in the United States that has a central heating system
with underground ducts supplying every building. The Aschbachers’
project would be like that, except instead of using coal, oil, or
gas, they would employ wood chips as fuel. "As a byproduct you
get gas to be used in producing electricity."
He insists that the supply of wood chips would not be a problem, that
they are plentifully available from "branches and leftovers and
also fast growing trees like poplar. Wood chips are used here for
mulch, but unless the chips are clean the mulch is full of weeds."
Ask Aschbacher about the incinerator, once scheduled to be built in
Mercer County, and he will tell you that this trash option has not
proven successful in his country. Despite the best efforts of engineers
in Austria, "they never really worked."
Knoll, Skillman 08558. Josef Aschbacher, president. 609-683-8836;
fax, 609-683-8837. Home page: www.astra-software.de.
won a Pulitzer prize for poetry for "Repair," a collection
of meditations on hurt and healing.
with AT&T and Lucent.
supervisor of the Princeton post office.
at the state Department of Banking.
in Middlesex County and a teacher and librarian. A memorial service
will be Sunday, April 16, at 3 p.m. at the United Methodist Church,
University Forrestal Research Center.
at Dow Jones.
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