As reflected in Gartner's Magic Quadrant for Data Quality Tools, 2009 was a year of continuation of trends. "Given that the economy was tough, we didn't see buyers radically changing their demand preferences," says Ted Friedman, Gartner Research vice president. "We saw the market wanting the basics of data quality capabilities in a way that could be deployed rapidly and cost effectively." That doesn't mean that data quality vendors are standing still, though. Friedman notes that consolidation is increasing--especially as vendors seek to implant data quality in related software markets such as data integration and master data management (MDM).
"It was also a volatile year in the form of mergers and acquisitions," the analyst states. He illustrates his point with the acquisitions of Netrics by Tibco and Silver Creek Systems by Oracle. "We continue to watch promising technology being acquired," he says. He writes in the report: "These developments are further recognition that data quality capabilities are at the core of many different data management-related disciplines."
In terms of the vendor placement on the Quadrant, Friedman says no drastic puddle jumping occurred. He drills into some of the highlights. DataFlux, the clear top performer on Gartner's Magic Quadrant, outpaces the other vendors, Friedman says because of its breadth of functionality, ease of use, and speed to deployment. Having SAS as DataFlux's parent company doesn't hurt either, the analyst says.
Informatica, Friedman notes, inched further in terms of execution due to its dedication to growing its data tools. Informatica acquired AddressDoctor and Identity Systems in spring 2009, which brought on new technical prowess. Address matching and identity resolution are "hot areas of the market," Friedman says. "Informatica benefits from having all these different pieces in their portfolio."
SAP Business Objects, a prominent leader in the space, declined in "ability to execute" largely because of "challenges in servicing and supporting customers." SAP's BusinessObjects customer base, according to Friedman, has been expressing challenges around timeliness of product support as well as pricing issues.
Cost, however, remains a Quadrant-wide issue. "During 2009, I saw our clients negotiating hard on price with these vendors or looking to niche specialist as a way to lessen costs." Bottom line, Friedman says, is that the leading data quality vendors are broadening their offerings, increasing deal sizes, and subsequently, maintaining high price points. Therefore, Friedman sees emerging niche players keep their footing. Datanomic, he says as an example, is making good progress on growing its business. "We continued to note the emergence of smaller vendors taking a different and promising approach to the problem.
Here's the breakdown of the 2010 Magic Quadrant for Data Quality Tools:
- Trillium Software
- Sap BusinessObjects
- Pitney Bowes Business Insight
- Human Interference
- Innovative Systems
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