As is reported by the IDC, small and medium-sized entities (SME) are increasingly interested in so-called Business Intelligence, a software which transforms operational data into knowledge on the basis of which business decisions are made. According to the IDC survey, the German market for such software is growing by approx. five percent annually and will probably reach a volume of 350 million dollars by the year 2009.
However, only half of the 426 German companies surveyed have so far seriously concerned themselves with this subject. The impression that Business Intelligence is still quite an abstract concept to the majority of SME all the more suggest itself, if one takes into account the different terminology which, apart from Business Intelligence, is circulating describing more or less one and the same kind of software: Analytic Applications, Corporate Performance Management, Business Performance Management, Data Mining etc.
In contrast to most other IT sectors, the market for Business Intellligence is still very fragmented. Only about one quarter of companies applying Business Intelligence software use the solutions of major producers. Thus, in the near future the market looks promising to suppliers as well as to the users of Business Intelligence. The software is particularly suitable to activate latent potential of small companies. A more detailed article by Frank Naujoks (Senior Consultant, IDC Central Europe GmbH) on the subject is available on the IDC website.