IBM has unveiled an expanded business strategy and roadmap - bolstered by the company's acquisition of Cognos - to help clients unlock the business value of information and use it for competitive advantage to address emerging, industry-specific business opportunities. With the addition of Cognos, more than 35 000 employees across IBM's global software, hardware, services and research organisations are united in support of the company's global Information on Demand business strategy.
The announcement features an array of new and enhanced joint IBM-Cognos solutions, products and services from across the company that enable organisations of all sizes to gain better insights from their data, improve decision-making, and optimise business performance, including:
* 10 new and enhanced IBM solutions for banking, retail, healthcare, government, life sciences and manufacturing industries.
* Six pre-integrated IBM-Cognos product offerings that enable companies to use business intelligence to improve overall business performance.
* Information on Demand Infrastructure Services to help clients plan, design and deploy a resilient enterprise data, storage and content management environment.
The new offerings extend IBM's end-to-end portfolio of Information on Demand software, hardware and services. These capabilities will extend IBM's ability to provide customers with the right information they need when they need it, along with key business insights to use for competitive advantage in response to changing market demands.
IBM is quickly capitalising on its acquisition of Cognos and extending its lead over competitors in the global market opportunity to help clients make better use of information, improve business processes and maximise performance across their enterprises. The acquisition supports IBM's objective for earnings-per-share growth through 2010.
"Thanks to our existing partnership with Cognos, common approach to open standards and complementary portfolios, we are hitting the ground running," said Zoaib Hoosen, software group executive, IBM South and Central Africa. "In the race to use information for realtime decision making, you not only need the right technology, but a global understanding of how information can be used to tackle tough business problems in dozens of industries. The combination of Cognos and IBM software, hardware, business consulting expertise and research investments clearly separate us from competitors."
IBM's ability to seamlessly unite its portfolio with Cognos furthers its comprehensive, cross-company Information on Demand business strategy, which was launched in February 2006. The Information on Demand strategy combines IBM's strengths in software, hardware, research and business consulting services to capture a pressing business opportunity aimed at helping clients better compete in the global economy.
The new IBM offerings include 10 industry solutions that help customers turn information into a strategic asset. These solutions include an expansion of the IBM Retail Integration Framework to incorporate Store Operations and Planning blueprints from Cognos that have been pre-integrated with IBM retail data models.
IBM also revealed several new products integrated with Cognos software, including:
* Cognos 8 BI 'starter pack' for IBM InfoSphere Warehouse and distribution of InfoSphere Warehouse with Cognos 8 BI solutions, making it easier for clients to adopt complete business intelligence and data warehousing solutions that quickly generate a positive return on investment.
* Pre-integration of Cognos 8 with the industry-first IBM Information Server software platform to deliver seamless data integration and quality, and metadata integration to provide data lineage to track the basis for business decisions.
* Pre-configured templates for integrating Cognos 8 BI with IBM FileNet business process management (BPM) software, enabling customers to use Cognos 8 BI reports and analytics to support critical business decisions.
* Pre-integration and bundling of an IBM Dashboard Accelerator 'starter kit' with Cognos 8 BI for rapidly building portal-based, actionable dashboards that enable users to take action and initiate operational transactions based on reviews of key business metrics. The Dashboard Accelerator will also now include the Cognos 8 BI 'starter pack' along with a new Cognos builder, which will make it easy for users to create portal and dashboard components that include Cognos reports or analytics.
In addition, IBM Cognos 8 BI software will be included in C-Class Balanced Warehouse offerings, which provide pre-tested, scalable and fully-integrated system components of IBM data warehouse software, server and storage technologies. The C-Class Balanced Warehouses offer small and medium-sized businesses a simple, complete solution for integrating and maintaining multiple data and information resources in a scalable and versatile data warehouse.
To help clients address their growing compliance, legal and governance challenges, IBM introduced the new IBM Compliance Warehouse for Legal Control comprising IBM software, hardware and services in a unified environment to enable organisations to achieve, sustain and prove compliance with multiple legal and compliance mandates while reducing cost, complexity and risk. The Compliance Warehouse combines a secure content repository, records management, content and e-mail archiving, and classification capabilities, combined with Tivoli and Lotus software and IBM storage hardware to provide a cost-effective solution for reducing information risk and optimising compliance and legal processes. This offering also uses Cognos technology for monitoring, reporting and analysing compliance-related content and processes.
IBM is also announcing a new IOD Infrastructure Community of Practice within IBM Global Technology Services (GTS). Established to build exchange and enable re-use of Information on Demand knowledge and assets, it helps develop new capabilities and share leading-edge thinking across IBM's software, business consulting, systems and Research organisations.
These new IBM services help clients plan, design and deploy a resilient infrastructure to deliver Information on Demand, while reducing risk and providing higher returns on IT investments. The GTS services include:
* IOD infrastructure implementation services - a combination of best practices and methodologies to quickly and cost-effectively deploy a highly-available, reliable dynamic data warehouse, including all of the relevant components. These services allow clients to make better informed decisions with less risk, while providing a faster path to a return on their investment.
* Storage optimisation and integration services - enable the design, deployment and operation of an efficient storage and data infrastructure. These services help to better integrate existing storage environments and improve utilisation and management. This includes methodologies and software to enable organisations to better understand their storage environments through an enterprise-wide assessment with reporting on storage utilisation, costs, and legal and IT compliance to help customers achieve operational efficiency. These services include the portfolio of assets and services from IBM's recent acquisition of NovusCG, market leading provider of storage optimisation, storage resource management, and process services on all major storage platforms.
* Data mobility services - help clients establish a simple and unified approach to managing and moving data on-line - over any distance, regardless of server platform or storage vendor. These services reduce operational risk without impacting performance. These services include data mobility software assets from IBM's recent acquisition of Softek - the market leader in data mobility software.
* Infrastructure services for compliance warehouse - provide assistance with infrastructure consulting, design, and implementation for information and enterprise content management, and archiving activities. The services, provided by IBM Global Business Services and GTS, are created to enable enterprise wide enablement of structured and unstructured information flow, access, and control for compliance, litigation, and business needs including long term preservation. The services include gathering of retention requirements, information classification, policy and governance definition and enforcement.
The joint IBM-Cognos products, solutions and services unveiled today provide an integrated approach to using information for competitive advantage. They are based on IBM's extensive experience gained from thousands of Information on Demand customer engagements, as well as feedback from IBM researchers and numerous software and systems deployments. The new offerings will enable clients to rapidly make the most of their existing business information and manage an avalanche of emerging information sources.