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Wayne Eckerson

Welcome to Wayne's World, my blog that illuminates the latest thinking about how to deliver insights from business data and celebrates out-of-the-box thinkers and doers in the business intelligence (BI), performance management and data warehousing (DW) fields. Tune in here if you want to keep abreast of the latest trends, techniques, and technologies in this dynamic industry.

About the author >

Wayne has been a thought leader in the business intelligence field since the early 1990s. He has conducted numerous research studies and is a noted speaker, blogger, and consultant. He is the author of two widely read books: Performance Dashboards: Measuring, Monitoring, and Managing Your Business (2005, 2010) and The Secrets of Analytical Leaders: Insights from Information Insiders (2012).

Wayne is founder and principal consultant at Eckerson Group,a research and consulting company focused on business intelligence, analytics and big data.

Every database vendor of note has shipped a big data platform trying to capitalize on the current market opportunity and buzz surrounding big data. This includes industry heavyweights, such as IBM, Oracle, SAP, Teradata, Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft, but also many less-known vendors who are hoping to carve out a profitable niche in the emerging market that combines Hadoop with traditional database management systems and data integration and analytics software.

One of the newest entrants to join the parade is Actian, which actually isn't so new because it's built around the open source Ingres database and its 10,000+ customer base, which has provided the renamed company with cash to purchase two other databases in 2013, namely Versant and Paraccel, as well as data integration vendor, Pervasive, whose DataRush and connector software now provides the glue that binds its multiple databases with Hadoop and each other.

What looks like on the surface as a mishmash of data products ties together quite nicely for Actian's target audience: mid-market companies that want to exploit big data analytics without the hefty pricetag offered by the big boys. With $140 million in annual revenue and 150% growth in the recent quarter, Actian is the "largest of the smaller" big data vendors, according to company officials. Because of its modular architecture, Actian customers can start small with Actian Vector, a single node analytic database, and then migrate to Actian Matrix (i.e. Paraccel) as their data processing needs grow.

Already, Actian is stealing glances from IBM's mid-size customers using IBM PureData Systems for Analytics (i.e. Netezza) who now must work through IBM resellers, according to Actian officials. Expect Actian to spend heavily in 2014 to muscle its way into the big data projects, while it works behind the scenes to more tightly integrate its products into a unified data platform.

For more information, see www.actian.com.

Posted February 11, 2014 10:47 AM
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