Is Hyperion Shopping? - InformationWeek

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7/20/2006
12:15 PM
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Is Hyperion Shopping?

Some pure-play business intelligence vendors appear to be in a daze these days, as the battlefield gets crowded. Instead of remaining focused on building defenses against an eventual full-scale assault on the market by Goliaths Microsoft and Oracle, vendors Hyperion, Cognos and Business Objects have had to deal with self-inflicted wounds.

Some pure-play business intelligence vendors appear to be in a daze these days, as the battlefield gets crowded. Instead of remaining focused on building defenses against an eventual full-scale assault on the market by Goliaths Microsoft and Oracle, vendors Hyperion, Cognos and Business Objects have had to deal with self-inflicted wounds.Cognos is facing a Securities and Exchange Commission review as it tries to put its accounting house in order. Business Objects, on the other hand, fell short in its revenue goals last quarter, due to several large deals that fell through.

Hyperion has its own problems as a result of trying to charge customers an "enablement fee" on top of their maintenance payments in order to get the company's major technology update System 9.

But if reports are correct, Hyperion may be regrouping and preparing to go on the offensive by purchasing analytics vendor Information Builders. With major vendors turning their big guns toward the BI market, experts have predicted for a while that consolidation would occur. Hyperion's war coffers include more than $400 million in cash, so the Santa Clara, Calif., company is certainly able to buy some reinforcements.

Among the financial experts who say an acquisition is possible is JMP Securities analyst Patrick Walravens, who wrote recently that Hyperion might decide to buy Information Builders to address the "significant competitive issues" it faces with System 9.

Hyperion is apparently thinking in terms of a bold offense, which is smart considering the turbulence in the BI market. Cognos and Business Objects need to do the same.

Drop me an email to let me know what you think.

In the meantime, Business Intelligence Pipeline readers have voted in favor of open-source BI. In an unscientific poll, half said they would prefer to use BI software built on top of the Eclipse Foundation's open-source reporting framework. Thirty-six percent said they believed proprietary technology was more robust, and 14 percent said they would consider Eclipse.

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