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April 3, 2006

Microsoft strengthens BI capabilities with acquisition of ProClarity

Posted by David Hunter at 5:06 PM ET.

Press release:

Microsoft Corp. today announced it has agreed to acquire ProClarity Corp., a software company based in Boise, Idaho, that develops advanced analysis and visualization technologies that work in association with Microsoft’s business intelligence (BI) platform, which includes Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2005, Microsoft Office Business Scorecard Manager 2005, Microsoft Office Excel® and Microsoft Office SharePoint® Portal Server. The upcoming release of the 2007 Microsoft Office system significantly increases and broadens Microsoft’s investment in BI, and this acquisition deepens that investment, providing functionality that includes additional advanced analysis and visualization technologies as well as business-logic-driven “guided” analysis.

Some analysis from Elizabeth Montalbano at InfoWorld:

Keith Gile, a principal analyst with Forrester Research Inc., said the acquisition “fills a gaping hole” for Microsoft and positions it more competitively as a BI vendor.

Gile said Microsoft’s investment in BI is fairly new, and there has not been a link between the back-end data mining and reporting services in the SQL Server database and the front-end interfaces business customers use. The acquisition of ProClarity changes that, he said.

“Office is a great consumer tool for BI, but it’s not a great producer tool — it’s not a mechanism for building, but surfacing the results,” he said. “ProClarity is a good tool to [produce BI results]. It’s strong at building queries, dashboards and analysis on top of the Microsoft platform.”

Over the past few years, Microsoft has increased its emphasis on having a comprehensive BI portfolio. In particular, Microsoft is promoting the next release of its Office suite, Office 2007, as not only a package for productivity but also BI in an effort to encourage customers to upgrade. Office is the front-end interface to Microsoft’s BI strategy, allowing users to see the results of business information extracted from SQL Server.

ProClarity, a long time Microsoft partner, is privately held and no financial terms were disclosed.

Filed under Acquisitions, Microsoft, Office, Office 2007, SQL Server, Servers

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3 Responses to “Microsoft strengthens BI capabilities with acquisition of ProClarity”

  1. Timeline sues Microsoft over database patent -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Update: Note that Microsoft acquired ProClarity in April. Filed under Patents, Microsoft, Patent Lawsuits [...]

  2. Microsoft releases PerformancePoint Server CTP -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Microsoft acquired ProClarity in April and PerformancePoint Server replaces Scorecard Manager Server. The net is that PerformancePoint is Microsoft’s try for the BI market building on the strengths of SQL Server as the underlying database and Office as the front-end. The PerformancePoint Server website has more details. Filed under Office, Beta and CTP, Microsoft Research, Scorecard, PerformancePoint Server [...]

  3. Microsoft launches Office PerformancePoint Server 2007 -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] As promised in August, Microsoft yesterday launched Office PerformancePoint Server 2007 as their flagship Business Intelligence offering. PerformancePoint Server 2007 enhances and replaces Microsoft’s previous Office Business Scorecard Manager Server 2005 (whew) and also incorporates advanced visualization and analysis technologies from ProClarity which Microsoft acquired in April 2006.   Filed under Office, Acquisitions, Scorecard, Microsoft, PerformancePoint Server   [Permalink] [TrackBack] [...]

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