Business Objects Teams With TopTier For Analytics

  • Written By: M. Reed
  • Published On: February 27 2001



Business Objects Teams With TopTier For Analytics
M. Reed - February 27, 2001

Event Summary

Business Objects (NASDAQ: BOBJ) today announced support for TopTier Software's new Enterprise Unification Platform Version 4.0, an enterprise portal designed to unite enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer resource management (CRM), supply chain management (SCM), and e-business intelligence solutions. TopTier and Business Objects plan to deliver the data from these enterprise applications in one desktop window thereby consolidating analysis across entire companies for customers, suppliers, and vendors.

TopTier and Business Objects will integrate TopTier's Enterprise Unification Platform and BusinessObjects InfoView, a Business Intelligence Portal, to enable business users to easily access, analyze, and share detailed corporate information created from raw data housed in web-based applications hosted by TopTier. Users simply Drag and Relate any field, such as a customer name or billing address, into InfoView, which automatically presents the user with all relevant information on that customer. This saves users time and ensures accuracy. Users can then analyze this information to make more informed business decisions.

"Through Business Objects' Open Portal Initiative, Business Objects and TopTier are collaborating to enhance our joint customer's experience by providing the e-business intelligence they need," said Shai Agassi, CEO and founder TopTier Software. "Unlocking this information across the entire enterprise is vital to survival in today's business world, and our joint solution will do this."

Market Impact

This market space is expected to become extremely lucrative as businesses try to unlock the information buried in their ERP, CRM, and SCM systems and turn it into knowledge. The addition of an enterprise portal to provide a unified view of this knowledge is also very compelling. The problem for software vendors of these types of products is that everyone came to this realization at about the same time. Analyst firms and the trade press are being inundated with product release announcements for business analytics packages, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to tell which ones do what, of course assuming that they all do something.

Vendors will have to work very hard to highlight their distinctive competencies to prospects. Tight integration with specific ERP packages will be especially important. TopTier's HyperRelational technology is used in several applications of leading software companies including SAP, and Invensys' Baan Data Navigator, so this product is off to a good start.

User Recommendations

One of the best ways to leverage value from investments in ERP, SCM, and CRM packages is to acquire technology that combines the information into a "logical view" from some specific perspective (the inward-facing view for the company, the outward-facing view for the customer, etc.), with some personalization capability built in. A variety of vendors who tout their "analytic applications" packages should be included on a long selection list. The ensuing interviews with the vendors should help the customer codify their actual needs in their own minds, as well as eliminate some vendors from contention. Some of the candidates for a long list would include Business Objects, Brio, Cognos and QueryObject (see "QueryObject Partners with Cognos"), Hummingbird, Hyperion Solutions, Plumtree, Siebel (see "Informatica Powers Siebel's new e-Business Analytics", MicroStrategy, and Knosys (see "Knosys 'in the kno' with ProClarity 3.0 Analytical Platform").

There may be many other candidates that a specific company is interested in for the long list of potential vendors, but the final short list should include no more than five.

 
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