Mark Smith, CEO and senior vice president for research and advisory services at Ventana Research, said the platform, based on technology nQuire had sold as a stand-alone platform before it was acquired by Siebel, does have some advantages with being able to aggregate data from multiple sources without requiring middleware. He said the front-end tools will be "competitive" with existing offerings from Cognos, Business Objects and MicroStrategy.Companies are looking to consolidate their business intelligence applications as much as possible, he said. "Its not going to happen overnight, but the stars are aligning. If [Siebel] doesnt get into this market now, theyre going to miss out. "Siebel has a strong business applications focus, they understand business problems," continued Smith. "The question is whether they can use that leverage they have with business users and convince the CIO that they have the right applications and the right BI platform." The Siebel Enterprise Analytic Platform is scheduled to be available this quarter. Separately, Siebel announced Wednesday another expansion of its alliance with IBM that calls for IBM to dedicate practitioners from its Business Consulting Services unit to Siebel Analytics Applications and the broader enterprise BI marketplace. Both companies will also collaborate in the development of specific BI solutions and infrastructure optimization across IBM software and hardware products. Discuss this in the eWEEK forum.
"The product will be competitive, and the market opportunity is there," Smith said.