Worldwide BI Revenue Reached $8.8 Billion in 2008
Growth in business intelligence software continues despite economic pressures.
Posted Jul 29, 2009
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Earlier last month, Gartner Research released findings that showed a 21.7 percent growth in revenue from worldwide business intelligence platform, analytic applications and performance management software. This increase translates into total revenue of $8.8 billion, up from $7.2 billion in 2007. The motivation for business intelligence solutions continues to be driven by a pursuit for organizational transparency and efficiency. Moreover, vendors -- from the legacy players to the software-as-a-service providers -- are offering more affordable options.

According to Bhavish Sood, principal research analyst at Gartner and co-author of the report, "Market Share: Business Intelligence, Analytics and Performance Management Software, Worldwide, 2008," revenue growth was driven in large part by industry consolidation. "Megavendors are offering BI platforms [at a] much lower cost," he says, "enabling users to buy and deploy enterprise wide." Reducing this barrier to adoption certainly helps as companies are looking to "drive better profitability, lower costs, and aid in service enhancement," he adds. In other words, cash in on the business intelligence promise. Sood also found that revenue growth could be attributed to companies that  optimization a step further, investing in niche BI applications that manage risk and control spending.  

Gartner reports very significant revenue growth in both BI platforms (24.3 percent) and analytics and performance management applications (20.4 percent), totaling approximately $3.1 billion and $5.7 billion respectively. The leading companies in this space include:

  • SAP..........................$2,096.0 million;
  • SAS Institute.............$1,286.6 million;
  • Oracle......................$1,284.0 million;
  • IBM.............................$996.5 million;
  • Microsoft......................$681.5 million;
  • MicroStrategy................$280.0 million; and
  • Others......................$2,177 million.

In the press release, Dan Sommer, senior research analyst at Gartner, states that the rate of growth is expected to slow by 2009. Because of market consolidation, much of the revenue came from upselling products to an existing customer base, as opposed to the acquisition of new customers.

Sood contends that the rampant consolidation in the BI space has hardly dampened innovation, with Gartner seeing technical advances in the following areas:

  • In-memory analytics;
  • search;
  • interactive visualization;
  • mashups;
  • on-demand (SaaS); and
  • analytic applications.

Sood is confident that the tremendous growth in this space, especially during an economic recession, points to an increase in BI adoption overall. "Gone are the days of BI shelfware," he says. "Clients are buying to deploy."

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