Business Intelligence, analytics and performance management applications seem to have enjoyed a good amount of revenue through sales. Business Intelligence as quoted in Wikipedia “refers to computer-based techniques used in identifying, extracting, and analyzing business data, such as sales revenue by products and/ or departments, or by associated costs and incomes. BI technologies provide historical, current and predictive views of business operations. Common functions of business intelligence technologies are reporting, online analytical processing, analytics, data mining, business performance management, benchmarking, and text mining & predictive analytics.”
In essence, every organization requires BI to ensure that there is up-to-date record management that will help them in taking better business decisions; hence it is also called the Decision Support System (DSS). According to reports from Gartner the spending by several organizations on BI, analytics and performance management applications has risen 13.4% last year with revenue of 10.5 billion dollars. The economic downturn that occurred a couple of years ago left a huge impact on every company’s costing, due to which they looked at reducing the costs incurred and at the same time wanted to improve productivity. Software solutions such as BI and Analytics helped firms find efficiencies and gain competitive advantage. This is exactly why BI sales never dropped, in fact grew even though the sales of enterprise software solutions dropped by 2.5% during 2009. Strong customer demand and impeccable sales efforts of BI vendors helped influence the clients.
The major producers and sellers of BI in the market are SAP, IBM, Oracle and Microsoft and these players easily hold a 59% of collective market share for Business Intelligence and performance management applications. The top spot in case of analytics software solutions is held by SAS Institute. Another report suggests that a huge portion of BI revenue comes from existing clients who show intent of renewing licensing or adding new ones to their product line rather than going for newer brands or solutions present in the market. Talking about the same, Gartner analyst Dan Sommer said, “Overall we did see a shift from ‘maintenance’ to ‘license’ and from ‘build’ to ‘buy’. In 2009, most vendors found it challenging to sell new licenses, as discretionary spending in IT budgets was frozen. As a result, vendors came up with increasingly creative strategies to squeeze maintenance revenue out of their customers.” The major reasons for this kind of a turn-around are improved economic conditions and some major product releases from IBM, Oracle, and others helped drive sales of renewed licences.
With demand for BI and analytics solutions increasing, the speculations only suggest further improvement in BI revenues by way of selling solutions to newer and bigger clients. Producers of these solutions are also bent on bringing out innovative modifications to the existing product line and introduce new ones. An instance of this is Microstrategy like it counterparts announced a new product that enables ‘self-service BI’ by means of which an organization can collect, record and analyze data on its own without the employment of IT staffers for support. Also joining the team are BI vendors such as SAS who are also doing their bit to provide necessary BI support for mobile devices like Apple’s iPad and Android tablets. This is due to a recent Forrester Research’s prediction on the emergence of mobile BI in Tablet devices because of their larger screen display, and thus become suitable for the types of visualizations and navigation styles that make BI software most useful.
There is a lot more expected from and for BI, analytics and performance management applications and solutions with the downturn fading away in almost all countries.