Enterprise cloud apps company Workday says it has secured five new major deployments in the past few months as part of a strategic push into Europe.
New customers unveiled by Workday include London auction house Christie's International, which is using Workday Human Capital Management in 32 countries, digital music service Spotify, and Netherlands-based financial organisation IMC.
In May, Workday chairman, co-founder and co-CEO Aneel Bhusri told ZDNet that Europe constitutes Workday's fastest-growing market. Its European activities have gone from almost nothing two years ago to provide more than 10 percent of the company's business today.
"Workday is really serious about Europe and at the highest level we're in a little bit of a race with SAP and Oracle. We believe we have a four- or five-year head-start with the products, as the world moves from on-premise to the cloud," Bhusri said.
"They've obviously got bigger sales and services organisations in Europe — that's really the race. I'm pretty optimistic at this point but these are two formidable competitors," he said.
Workday recently set out plans for UK and French payroll systems, which should be available by 2015 in the UK and 2016 in France, as part of a drive to secure more European subscriptions.
The two other European customers named by Workday are London health and safety services firm Environmental Resources Management with more than 140 offices in 39 territories, and games company King, which produces Candy Crush.
According to Bhusri, the company's success in North America results largely from a focus on multinationals. Workday's strategy in the UK, France, the Netherlands and Scandinavian countries is built on the same approach. Its average new customer has between 10,000 and 20,000 employees. It has about 450 customers worldwide.
Workday has six European offices — in the UK, Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, and Germany.
Existing European Workday customers include UK-based insurer Aviva, retail group Primark, foreign-exchange company Travelex, and business services firm Rentokil Initial, as well as Netherlands electronics giant Philips.