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Business Intelligence Market Updates

To date, BI has fallen significantly short of its full potential. Companies want much more from business intelligence systems, than they can currently deliver, including the ability to predict customer problems and make analysis part of minute-to-minute operations.

BI vendors recognize that businesses want query, reporting, and analysis tools completely integrated with their operations, not as a seperate side capability. Keep up to date with how BI vendors are rising up to meet this challenge.

Over the past year, the foundation of the business intelligence market have been completely revised, with synergy between transactional systems and BI. Research company, Forrester, also sees more blurring of BI and transaction/process management ahead, and IDC calls it "intelligent process automation. "It's all about infusing BI into the workflow of applications, whether they are HR, finance or whatever," explains IDC's Dan Vesset. "That's where SAP can really make a mark because it controls the applications, and with Business Objects it will also have the BI tools."

They key, like any product will be in the differentiation.

Business Objects competitor SAS also believes that analytics and application environments need to be one and the same, but not necessarily through acquisition. Jim Davis, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of SAS said,"If you just look at components like query and reporting, they're becoming a commodity. Our success has been based on things like fraud detection, price optimization in retail, churn management in telco and campaign management in marketing. The apps have analytics in them, but it's not analytics alone."

Whilst Oracle, Microsoft and now SAP (with Business Objects) are the mainstays of the new business intelligence market, independent BI vendors are deemphasizing BI and are instead promoting analytics [SAS] or performance management [Cognos].

Whilst Oracle and Microsoft are promoting the term 'BI', they are doing so in reference to analytic applications, data warehousing and tools. BI is retained as a marketing term rather than a technology, but it now has a broader meaning.

SAP Buying Business Objects

SAP has reached an agreement to acquire Business Objects for $6.8 billion. [ 42 Euros per share]

Business Objects, was founded in France in 1990 and currently maintains a headquarters in Paris and a U.S. base in San Jose, Calif. The industry's largest business intelligence vendor, had a revenue of $1.25 billion in 2006.

"The acquisition of Business Objects is in keeping with SAP's stated strategy to double our addressable market by 2010 as announced in 2005," said SAP CEO Henning Kagermann. InformationWeek reported last fall that SAP pegged its customer base at 35,000, and wanted to hit 100,000 by 2010.

According to Business Objects' Web site, the global BI specialist has 43,000 customers. Thus, the acquisition will immediately vault SAP's user roles to 78,000.

The BI capability will complement SAP's delivery of the first business process platform and its enterprise SOA platform, SAP NetWeaver, and the first complete on-demand business solution for midsized companies, SAP Business ByDesign.

SAP will also gain Cartesis in the deal, the European performance management vendor acquired by Business Objects in April 2007.

A joint statement claimed SAP will aim to provide "new, innovative offerings of enterprise-wide business intelligence solutions along with embedded analytics in transactional applications."

Closing date of the deal is heavily reliant on negotiating French law.

More on SAP BI Solution


Worldwide Business Intelligence Tools 2006

In 2006, business intelligence [BI] tools were still strong, compared with other business applications and tools, and represented one of the top investment priorities for end-user organizations.

  • The market showed growth of 11.5% in 2006 for a total market size of $6.25
    billion in worldwide software revenue.
  • BI vendor acquisitions continued
  • New version releases - Cognos 8 BI
  • Effective marketing and sales efforts by many small and medium-sized BI vendors. Largely targeted at broader use base, with little direct impact, however, results will be ongoing.

Interest in advanced analytics for forecasting, optimization, and other decision
support techniques is growing as organizations look to move beyond using BI
tools only for query and reporting.

More on Cognos 8 BI Solution



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BI Solution Index | Market | Gartner Eval. | Comparisons | BI On Demand | BusinessObjects | Cognos 8 BI | IBM | Information Builders | MS PerformancePoint | MS Sharepoint | Microstrategy | Oracle BI | SAP BI | SAS | Teradata | BI Virtual Appliances | BI Vendor Updates | 2008 BI Offerings

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