BI On Demand: The List of Options Grows - InformationWeek

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3/7/2007
12:49 PM
Doug Henschen
Doug Henschen
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BI On Demand: The List of Options Grows

LucidEra, launched yesterday, joins an ever-growing list of on-demand vendors in and around the BI space. Just last week I spoke to Adaptive Planning and SeaTab, and there's also Oco. These vendors claim to be "the only on-demand… insert qualifier here" but there will soon be plenty to choose from, including spinoffs from some of the industry giants.

Business intelligence on demand for $3,000 per month for 100 users? That sounds pretty attractive, but LucidEra is not your typical BI suite that lets you build any application you want, now in a SaaS environment. It's specifically a BI-based forecast-to-billing application that includes data connectors (CRM, accounting, etc.), ETL, data cleansing, data warehousing, OLAP and a Web-based user interface.

But isn't BI supposed to be an all-purpose suite?"That's part of the problem: People have always thought of BI as a tool set that is very complicated to use and I have to hire a bunch of people to build a solution for me," says Ken Rudin, LucidEra's CEO and cofounder. "By the time any end user gets to BI, they're using a prebuilt solution that has either been prebuilt by consultants or their own IT group."

In contrast, LucidEra's forecast-to-billing app is easy for small and midsized enterprises to set up, says Rudin, and he adds that users can create their own queries and reports, modify existing reports and slice, dice and drill-down into the data. Next on the agenda are additional marketing and financial apps, and like Salesforce.com, LucidEra plans to make available APIs that will enable partners to build apps on the platform.

LucidEra joins an ever-growing list of on-demand vendors emerging in and around the BI space. Just last week I spoke to Adaptive Planning, a collaborative business performance management vendor taking the SaaS approach. And then there's SeaTab, an outfit that's been around for years as an embedded BI technology provider, but now it's ramping up efforts to sell directly to customers. Oco is another on-demand BI vendor showing up on the radar.

These vendors claim to be "the only on-demand… insert qualifier here" but there will soon be plenty to choose from, including spinoffs from some of the industry giants. I'll be on the lookout at next week's Gartner BI Summit for other vendors joining the fray.LucidEra, launched yesterday, joins an ever-growing list of on-demand vendors in and around the BI space. Just last week I spoke to Adaptive Planning and SeaTab, and there's also Oco. These vendors claim to be "the only on-demand… insert qualifier here" but there will soon be plenty to choose from, including spinoffs from some of the industry giants.

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