Microsoft enters business intelligence market with acquisition
According to Ovum, "The BI pure-play vendors are always aware of the shadow of the enterprise software vendors, and keep a close eye on the big four of IBM, Microsoft, Oracle and SAP. On the Microsoft front, the acquisition of ProClarity's mature, robust, user front-end software is the one they will have been dreading most. The gap in the front end of Microsoft's platform has pushed it out of a number of deals for a long time, as Microsoft typically provided beefy server tools (database, OLAP server, programming languages) at the back end, with toolkits (Reporting Services) to build front ends. This approach worked well, with Microsoft shops employing developers, or companies prepared to use an additional partner as well as Microsoft, but for many organisations it left too many unknowns and too much development. Adding the ProClarity functionality to Microsoft's core server-based offering immediately puts it in a like-for-like race with Business Objects, Cognos and Hyperion in terms of front-end functionality, with the advantage of a perceived greater level of standardisation, as the company provides a wider range of software in terms of its database and its .NET programming architecture."
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