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Rick Sherman

Welcome! In addition to data integration, my BeyeNETWORK blog will include observations on the business and technology of performance management, business intelligence and data warehousing. Most posts will be hosted on my Data Doghouse blog, so feel free to leave comments here or on the Data Doghouse. If you'd like to suggest topics or ask me any questions, please email me at

About the author >

Rick has more than 20 years of business intelligence (BI), data warehousing (DW) and data integration experience. He is the founder of Athena IT Solutions, a Boston-based consulting firm that provides DW/BI consulting, training and vendor services; prior to that he was a director/practice leader at PricewaterhouseCoopers.  Sherman is a published author of more than 50 articles, an industry speaker and has been quoted in CFO and Business Week. He also teaches data warehousing at Northeastern University's graduate school of engineering. You can reach him at and follow him on Twitter at

Editor's Note: More articles and resources are available on Rick's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!

September 2009 Archives

In our post Enterprise Software: Is there any one left to buy?
we listed the best candidates to be acquired within the lucrative
Business Intelligence (BI) and Data Warehousing (DW) industry:

  • SAS (Private)
  • Informatica (INFA)
  • MicroStrategy (MSTR)
  • Netezza (NZ)

  • Teradata (TDC)
We have ruled out privately-held SAS because they are very reluctant to
be acquired. (If they were willing then IBM would likely have bought
them versus offense to SPSS but SAS is the 800-lb gorilla in
the business analytics segment.)

big_fish_small_fish_smaller.jpgThe Usual Suspects

The high tech Titans - IBM (IBM), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), Oracle (ORCL), Microsoft (MSFT), SAP (SAP)
- are already very active in the DW/BI industry selling software,
services and in some cases hardware. Are any of the acquisition targets
on our list attractive to the Titans and would impact their market

>>>Continue reading Enterprise Software: Who Should Buy Whom?

Posted September 30, 2009 12:46 PM
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titans.gifThe high tech Titans - IBM (IBM), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), Oracle (ORCL), Microsoft (MSFT), SAP (SAP) and EMC (EMC) - have been buying software firms at an amazing pace over the last half decade. According to BusinessWeek
the tally is: Oracle $30 billion for 56 companies, Microsoft 79
companies, IBM 60 companies, EMC 40, and HPQ 34. Many of these
acquisitions have been "tuck-ins" where the Titans have added the
purchased company's product capabilities into their product portfolio.
This is a time honored practice the Titans and their smaller brethren,
have used to expand beyond organic growth and tap the innovative ideas
of entrepreneurs.

Although tuck-ins have been a mainstay of software mergers and
acquisitions (M&A) for decades, Oracle in the last decade has
raised the bar by being successful in acquiring firms of a much larger
size and, very much against software etiquette, even completing hostile
takeovers. PeopleSoft and Seibel are the two case studies to validate
this new approach.

>>>Continue reading this post on The Data Doghouse

Posted September 30, 2009 12:37 PM
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database_wars.jpgA recent flurry of news articles in the database industry has
reinforced my perceptions that the software titans have lost touch with
current market needs. 

The PR machines from IBM and Oracle have
been each claiming to have the fastest database and hardware platform
on the market today. Database vendors battling each other on who has
the fastest or the most features is nothing new and has been going on
for a couple of decades. But what has changed is "who cares?"  Of
course it does matter if you are a techie and you are evaluating
which platform has those characteristics. It also matters to industry
analyst and consultants that are evaluating and recommending the "best"
database platform one can buy.  But maybe the key criterion for
future database market share growth is not the best but what is the
"best buy." 

>>>Read the rest of Database Wars: Fighting Yesterday's Battle?

Posted September 21, 2009 3:57 PM
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