Cloud-based financial applications developer Host Analytics announced the launch of a platform designed to transform and move Microsoft Excel models into a centralized, secure, cloud-based enterprise performance management (EPM) environment to facilitate financial planning and reporting.
The company’s AirliftXL platform utilizes an application transformation engine that intelligently parses complex spreadsheets to create and import new models into the Host Analytics cloud platform.
"Enabling all participants in business planning, closing and financial analytics processes to create, modify and update models in Excel and then immediately translate them into an enterprise planning application turns everyone into a programmer," Robert Kugel, senior vice president and research director at Ventana Research, said in a statement. "This should increase productivity and, because these models are always changing, improve the flexibility and value of the EPM software."
The lift comes from the ability to capture and reuse Excel formulas, formatting and model structures automatically validate existing spreadsheets to prevent moving errors into EPM applications and migrate existing models from legacy on-premises EPM applications.
"A very complex balance sheet with large amounts of mapping could take days to build and validate with traditional approaches," Stuart Barnard, managing director at Inside Info, said in a statement. "With Host Analytics AirliftXL, we did it in an hour. We see this as a way to replace low-value template building grunt work with higher value consulting."
AirliftXL technology, now included at no additional charge as part of the Host Analytics EPM Suite, is designed to facilitate migration and also help eliminate the cost and rework associated with re-creating existing models in an EPM system.
"As a former senior director for software development for the Oracle Hyperion Essbase and SmartView products, I witnessed the impact of OLAP and Excel front-ends on finance and accounting professionals," Steve Tai, chief architect at Host Analytics, said in a statement. "AirliftXL extends those concepts further with patent-pending technology that now enables Excel not just as a reporting environment but as a modeling environment."
In October, Host Analytics announced a partnership with Brittenford Systems, a technology services firm, whereby Brittenford will resell the Host Analytics Cloud EPM suite, adding another cloud-based offering to the company’s product arsenal.
The cloud-based EPM Suite complements ERP and general ledger systems such as Microsoft Dynamics GP, Dynamics SL and Intacct in Brittenford’s portfolio.
In addition to providing financial management solutions and systems for accounting, budgeting, reporting and business intelligence, Brittenford delivers consulting, training and support expertise to its stable of clients.