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Progress's Armstrong adds APJ to EMEA responsibilities

Progress Software has broadened the responsibilities of Mark Armstrong, as reflected by his new title of vice-president and managing director, international operations for EMEA and APJ.

Armstrong told iTWire that he had spent 30 years in the software industry, eight of them with Progress.

He has served as vice-president and managing director for EMEA for the last four years, and agreed to take on the APJ role as well in January.

Armstrong has experience in the region, having set up Australian and APAC operations for a UK-based software company earlier in his career.

Progress chief executive Yogesh Gupta has flagged an increased focus on cognitive applications, and the company recently announced its acquisition of predictive analytics vendor DataRPM.

DataRPM focuses on predictive maintenance solutions for the Industrial IoT, applying machine learning to machine learning in order to deliver improved prediction quality and accuracy in significantly less time.

Noting IDC predictions that APJ cognitive/AI spending will grow to almost equal that in EMEA by 2020, Armstrong says predictive maintenance "is a real opportunity" for Progress in the APJ region.

Progress customers such as specialist ERP vendor CMS Transport Systems will be able to apply this technology to the growing amount of data collected by sensors so their customers can move beyond preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance. That involves using machine learning to reveal early signs of impending failure so repairs can be made before a breakdown.

In the transport industry, that can make the difference between replacing a part before a vehicle sets out on a long trip, and a breakdown on the road, which makes on-time delivery less likely, and in some cases can result in the loss of a perishable load.

Progress has a broad customer base in Australia, Armstrong said, in segments including Web content management, mobile development and core business applications.

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.