As Published In
Oracle Magazine
July/August 2007

AT ORACLE: Oracle News

Driving Performance Management

By Jeff Erickson

With its Hyperion acquisition, Oracle creates end-to-end enterprise performance management.

Change is afoot in the performance management and business intelligence (BI) markets, and Oracle's acquisition of Hyperion is a sign of where things are headed. "What drove Oracle's acquisition of Hyperion is that two related types of software within the enterprise are coming together," says Thomas Kurian, Oracle's senior vice president of Oracle Fusion Middleware. "Performance management and operational business intelligence are converging."

Oracle has made strong moves in the BI market over the last year by integrating Oracle's Siebel Business Analytics applications with its own BI technology. The acquisition of Hyperion, which provides business performance management software to more than 12,000 customers worldwide, including 91 of the Fortune 100, further extends Oracle's capabilities by allowing the company to offer the industry's most comprehensive system for enterprise performance management.

"Performance management gives a company's management team a unified view of their plans and how they're executing against those plans," says Kurian. For example, a financial institution might use business performance management software to consolidate data from different business units, use that information to accurately model the effects of changes in pricing or product mix, and then create graphical reports that compare day-to-day performance against forecasts.

"At the same time, the company has operational business intelligence tools that collect data from their transaction systems, such as enterprise resource planning and customer relationship management systems, for analysis," Kurian says. "People want to be able to close the loop between the two: define their strategy, model different scenarios, then execute their business," he adds. "They want to correlate the intelligence they're getting about how the business is functioning back into the planning systems, and then drive changes in their operational systems if they're not hitting their targets."

Together, Kurian anticipates, Oracle and Hyperion technology will allow companies to do just that. "The unification of operational business intelligence with performance management drives the creation of an end-to-end enterprise performance management system."

A Logical Step

The Hyperion acquisition is a logical step in a corporate strategy that began more than a year ago. Following the Siebel acquisition, Oracle reoriented its BI product suite, shifting its focus from offering a solution that worked for Oracle-only environments toward offering a best-of-breed BI product family for Oracle and non-Oracle environments. Oracle introduced Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition, an integrated suite that provides BI capabilities such as advanced reporting, interactive dashboards, alerts, and ad hoc analysis.

Next Steps

 LEARN more about Hyperion and Oracle

 READ more about Oracle Business Intelligence

Acquired Hyperion technology will add complementary products to Oracle's BI offerings, including a leading open enterprise planning system, financial consolidation products, and a powerful multisource online analytical processing server. The resulting enterprise performance management system will span planning, consolidation, operational analytic applications, BI tools, reporting, and data integration.

Building on Hyperion's Strengths

Oracle plans to continue delivering on "hot-pluggable" BI, enabling customers to continue to leverage existing investments in Oracle and non-Oracle datasources and applications, and Hyperion technology supports this strategy. Oracle customers will gain access to Hyperion's performance management solutions and domain expertise in financial management, and bringing Hyperion into the Oracle stack extends Hyperion's capabilities beyond the finance department.

"Our plans are to integrate the Hyperion products into the Oracle Business Intelligence product family, which will form a single, end-to-end enterprise performance management system," says Kurian. 

Jeff Erickson is a senior editor with Oracle Publishing.

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