Informix Goes Vertical With Software Vendor ADRM

  • Written By: M. Reed
  • Published: June 30 2000

Informix Goes Vertical With Software Vendor ADRM
M. Reed - June 30, 2000

Event Summary

Informix has announced a strategic alliance with Applied Data Resource Management (ADRM) to develop industry-specific data models to provide packaged analytic components for business intelligence and e-business analytics. The alliance was originally discussed with Ardent Software before their merger with Informix. ADRM currently supports over 10 industries with 23 lines of business and 30 subject areas, which they refer to as "data environments".

ADRM's current client list includes the U.S. Navy, Kraft Foods, and New York Life. The first package to be released by Informix was announced at SAP's SAPPHIRE conference in Las Vegas this month, and is aimed at the consumer packaged goods industry. The demonstration was conducted using Ardent's DataStage product, an Oracle database, and Brio as a front-end query tool.

"In the past few years, the Internet economy has impacted nearly every industry. To effectively compete in business-to-consumer and business-to-business Web-driven markets, organizations require powerful analytic architectures that enable them to transform corporate data into useful information," said Pete Fiore, vice president and general manager, i.Intelligence business group, Informix. "With these packaged analytic offerings, Informix is making it easier and more efficient to deploy the type of industry-specific information architecture that companies will need for competitive advantage in their markets."

"With these highly customizable and flexible sets of components, organizations will have faster, increased access to their data resources, enabling them to better recognize and address the market needs of their specific industries," added Mikael Wipperfeld, vice president, i.Intelligence business group, Informix.

Market Impact

The move towards vertical market templates by Informix mirrors the efforts being made by Sybase to penetrate specific industries with pre-defined ("canned") applications which can be quickly implemented to provide rapid return on investment. The packages also support standard query and reporting tools, including Informix's Visionary data visualization tool (see "A Visionary of Loveliness", April 20, 2000 for more information).

In the new Internet economy, quick turnaround on IT initiatives to provide business intelligence has proven to be a key to success. Informix's attempt to speed implementation in vertical markets is a necessary move in order to continue to compete for business with Internet-centric firms. Their initial effort is aimed at consumer packaged goods, but they intend to offer other verticals in the near future (retail and telecommunications are scheduled for the summer of 2000). These will also be linked to the SAP platform since Informix's Ardent DataStage product already has the capability to read from SAP and write to SAP BW (SAP's Business Information Warehouse). (For further details on this product see "Ardent Software Enters the SAP Data Extraction Market", September 13, 1999).

User Recommendations

Companies in the packaged consumer goods industry may be able to realize very quick return on investment with this product. Potential customers in other vertical markets should discuss the possibility of adding support for their industry to the product suite. It is often common for vendors to add functionality only when requested by a potential customer, so it is not wise to wait and see if your particular vertical is added.

In the software vendor world, it is typically "ask and ye shall receive (maybe)". In addition, customers may be able to negotiate a reduction in the price of the software if they provide assistance in the development of the vertical analytics for their industry. Informix will undoubtedly sell the model to other customers, so it is also in their interest to team with the company to develop the software.

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