IBM Adding Vivisimo to Big Blue's Analytics Arsenal

IBM announced plans to acquire Vivisimo, a maker of analytics software for handling structured and unstructured data. IBM also announced support for Cloudera’s Hadoop distribution.

IBM continues to amass an arsenal of analytics expertise, this time with the acquisition of Vivisimo, an information optimization and analytics company.

Big Blue, on April 25 announced a definitive agreement to acquire Pittsburgh-based Vivisimo, which provides federated discovery and navigation software to help organizations access and analyze big data across the enterprise. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Meanwhile, IBM also announced that its big data platform will now run on Cloudera€™s distribution of Hadoop.

Vivisimo€™s claim to fame is its ability to capture and deliver information across a broad range of data sources, no matter what format it is, or where it resides. The software automates the discovery of data and helps employees navigate it with a single view across the enterprise, providing insights that drive better decision making.

IBM said the move to acquire Vivisimo accelerates IBM's big data analytics initiatives with advanced federated capabilities, allowing organizations to access, navigate, and analyze their structured and unstructured data without having to move it.

The combination of IBM's big data analytics capabilities with Vivisimo software will further IBM's efforts to automate the flow of data into business analytics applications, helping clients better understand consumer behavior, manage customer churn and network performance, detect fraud in real-time, and perform data-intensive marketing campaigns, the company said

"Navigating big data to uncover the right information is a key challenge for all industries," Arvind Krishna, general manager of information management for the IBM Software Group, said in a statement. "The winners in the era of big data will be those who unlock their information assets to drive innovation, make real-time decisions and gain actionable insights to be more competitive."

"Businesses need a faster and more accurate way to discover and navigate big data for analysis," said John Kealey, CEO of Vivisimo, also in a statement. "As part of IBM, we can bring clients the quickest and most accurate access to information necessary to drive growth initiatives that increase customer satisfaction, streamline processes and boost sales."

Boris Evelson, an analyst with Forrester Research, said his firm€™s research shows that 1 to 5 percent of all enterprise data is in a structured, modeled format. But he said there is a chicken-and-egg phenomenon at play.

€œBefore you can put your data into a structure, like a database, you need to understand what€™s out there and what structures do or may exist,€ Evelson said in a blog post. €œBut in order for you to explore the data in the first place, traditional data integration technologies require some structures to even start the exploration (like tables, columns, etc). So how do you explore something without a structure, without a model, without preconceived notions? That€™s where big data exploration and discovery technologies like Hadoop or Vivisimo (and many others, like Oracle Endeca, Attivio, Saffron Technology) come into play.€