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Claudia Imhoff

Welcome to my blog.

This is another means for me to communicate, educate and participate within the Business Intelligence industry. It is a perfect forum for airing opinions, thoughts, vendor and client updates, problems and questions. To maximize the blog's value, it must be a participative venue. This means I will look forward to hearing from you often, since your input is vital to the blog's success. All I ask is that you treat me, the blog, and everyone who uses it with respect.

So...check it out every week to see what is new and exciting in our ever changing BI world.

About the author >

A thought leader, visionary, and practitioner, Claudia Imhoff, Ph.D., is an internationally recognized expert on analytics, business intelligence, and the architectures to support these initiatives. Dr. Imhoff has co-authored five books on these subjects and writes articles (totaling more than 150) for technical and business magazines.

She is also the Founder of the Boulder BI Brain Trust, a consortium of independent analysts and consultants (www.BBBT.us). You can follow them on Twitter at #BBBT

Editor's Note:
More articles and resources are available in Claudia's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!

Interesting... How does a company go from being the object of a nasty patent infringement suit to forming a warm and fuzzy partnership with the very company suing it? Apparently easily and rather quietly.

On October 10, 2006, Hyperion announced its plans to bring Hyperion System 9 together with technology from HyperRoll. And the good feelings toward HyperRoll didn't stop there...

This new partner agreement is only part of a mutual resolution of patent litigation between these two companies. The resolution also includes a technology cross-licensing arrangement, and an equity investment by Hyperion in HyperRoll to the tune of several million dollars! While not publicly disclosing the amount of this investment, according to an Israeli business news article, HyperRoll raised $10 million from Hyperion and venture capital funds.

According to the same article, this multiyear cross-licensing agreement is expected to generate tens of millions of dollars for HyperRoll. Sounds like the mouse scared the elephant...

Not familiar with this story? Well, here is a recap of the last 22 months:

1. January 18, 2005 - HyperRoll launched its suit against Hyperion asserting claims of patent infringement, violation of the Lanham Act, and false patent marking. The company claimed that Hyperion's product, Essbase 7X which included their Aggregate Storage Option (ASO), infringed on two HyperRoll patents dealing with data aggregation. HyperRoll CEO, Michael Bealmear stated that his company had made a large investment in developing the data aggregation technologies and that the company will protect its intellectual property to prevent infringement.

2. October 18, 2005 - The US Patent Office completed its review of HyperRoll's Patents and upholds all 27 claims and approved an additional 96 claims. HyperRoll's CEO then states that " These 96 claims significantly strengthen HyperRoll's position in its dispute with Hyperion and enables HyperRoll to aggressively protect its intellectual property". Yeow -- things are getting nasty.

But a lot happens in a year...

3. According to an article by Stephen Swoyer yesterday, things were not looking good for HyperRoll. Hyperion's ASO product clearly spelled the end of HyperRoll's Essbase niche and their other niche -- Oracle's Express -- was being decommissioned by Oracle. The result? HyperRoll had to change its focus from data aggregation to its ability to improve query performance for relational data. Eric Rogge, HyperRoll's new VP of Marketing, is quoted in the article as saying his company's value proposition is the same as it ever was: "HyperRoll accelerates query response times and improves transactional performance for a number of different relational database platforms".

4. October 10, 2006 - All is sweetness and light. HyperRoll and Hyperion kiss and make up. Rogge says it's just water under the bridge. And what does HyperRoll's CEO say now? " We're delighted to join with Hyperion to see HyperRoll's powerful technology provide new benefits to users of Hyperion's System 9. And we are pleased to have them on board as an investor in our company". I'll bet you are... all the way to the bank.

Seems like this is not the best basis for a happy relationship. I could be wrong but statistics say that marriages based on this type of artificial and forced relationship don't last long. We can only hope that the kids (the customers of both companies) don't suffer if Mom and Dad fight.

I welcome your comments.

Yours in BI Success.


Posted October 19, 2006 8:16 AM
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