SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 19, 2000--Business Objects (NASDAQ: BOBJ), the world's leading provider of e-business intelligence (e-BI) solutions, today announced WebIntelligence Extranet Edition, an advanced version of the company's leading query, reporting, and analysis solution for the internet. WebIntelligence Extranet Edition has been built to take advantage of the tremendous market opportunity with customers building extranets to link suppliers, customers, and partners. Business Objects has just reached the 100 customer extranet milestone and is delivering WebIntelligence Extranet Edition to further develop this business opportunity.
Business to business extranets are estimated to reach a $1.3 trillion dollar market by 2002, and we are extremely well positioned to address this market," said Tony Jewitt, director of extranet business development at Business Objects. "We are extremely excited to have reached the 100 customer extranet mark. Based on our pioneering work with these WebIntelligence customers, we are now able to deliver a special product to address this market opportunity even more strongly."
The vendor went on to explain that its interface is customizable based on Microsoft Active Server Pages (ASP's), in order to allow the customer to change the look and feel of the interface. In addition, auditing features allow the product to help customers bill suppliers for information about the final customer by line, time connected, or report accessed. The product also contains "more detailed documentation" for implementation in multiple firewall situations.
It is not surprising to see another vendor go after the large e-business intelligence market. It remains to be seen how strong their offering will be and whether their sales force understands how to sell the product. Business Objects has always had a strong product offering in the business intelligence arena, and should be positioned to sell into their existing customer base. According to the vendor, they currently have more than 1,442,000 licenses in 9,100 organizations.
Customers evaluating e-business solutions should definitely include Business Objects on a long list of vendors to be considered. One of the hardest issues involved in extranet technology is making the data available outside the firewall without compromising security, so the vendor should be strongly questioned as to how they propose to make this possible, and whether real-time or near real-time data access from back-end systems has been designed into the product.