A balanced diet for the data-hungry
Sunday 06 September 1998
Or, rather, raw information is much more accessible. Company after company has established ominous-sounding "data warehouses" which, thanks to increasingly sophisticated information technology, collect all sorts of material from all corners of its operations.
But having this data is one thing and exploiting it quite another. Indeed, a survey indicated that senior executives put the ability to analyse information alongside the more familiar problems of the year 2000 and the introduction of the euro as one of the three key issues facing business.
It is for this reason that software has been developed which aims to make sense of the contents of what might be termed silos of information, and so assist companies in achieving the ultimate goal of gaining a competitive advantage over their rivals.
Hyperion Software, a US company, has been a leader in the field of enterprise- wide software for about as long as it has existed. But last week it raised the stakes by merging with another American company, Arbor, to exploit what it sees as a new "market space" for analytic applications.
Up until now, Hyperion - founded in California by a Scot and an Italian in 1981 - has provided the software for reporting, analysing, modelling and planning, while Arbor, a decade younger, has been the supplier of tools needed to do this work, particularly in the increasingly important area of on-line analytical processing.
By joining together to form a $375m (pounds 230m) turnover company with more than 1,800 employees, the managers claim to be serving customers who are increasingly obsessed with "knowledge management" through offering a one- stop shop.
Iain Kerr, who is returning to Britain after more than 20 years in the United States to run the European operation, emphasised that the world's largest companies could deal with the new organisation, named Hyperion Solutions, whether they wanted to build an analytical system or buy one.
All merger participants claim that they are doing the deals for the benefit of their customers rather than themselves, but Hyperion can point to a lot of support for the venture, both from users of its software and from organisations with which it has formed partnerships.
Representatives of such organisations as Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter have been quoted as saying that the deal breaks new ground. The mass of data that Hyperion's 4,000-plus large companies have collected is now "ready to be turned into information", and the initiative reflects the increasing need for "decision-support tightly coupled with business processes and applications".
- 2 Why this father didn’t hide his daughter’s heroin overdose in her obituary
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 The most powerful passports in the world
Nepal earthquake in pictures: Photos show devastation caused by 7.8 magnitude earthquake
Smartphones are making children borderline autistic, says psychiatrist
Nepal earthquake: The race is on to help thousands trapped under rubble around Kathmandu, while remote villages face a long wait for help
Royal baby: Live updates as superbug closes ward at St Mary's Hospital where Duchess of Cambridge is due to give birth
Teaching profession headed for crisis as numbers continue to drop and working lives become 'unbearable'
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
iJobs Money & Business
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£50000 - £55000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Business Analyst - Financial Service...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: At SThree, we like to be differe...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Did you know? SThree is the o...