Microsoft continues its assault and focus on the BI marketplace with the announcement of Office PerformancePoint Server 2007. This product combines analytics and scorecards with business planning, forecasting, budgeting and consolidation. This announcement continues the marketplace trend of bring planning systems closer to BI applications. It also represents a major threat to the planning products of other BI vendors like Business Objects, Cognos, and Hyperion given Microsoft's emphasis on integration with Microsoft Office and Excel.
The analytics component of PerformancePoint integrates technology acquired from ProClarity. The ProClarity acquisition is now complete and Microsoft will continue to sell and enhance the ProClarity product set. ProClarity customers, however, will be offered a migration path to PerformancePoint.
The scorecard component is based on Microsoft's existing Business Scorecard Manager product. A new "2007" version of BSM will be released concurrently with PerformancePoint.
The brand new component of PerformancePoint supports business planning, budgeting, forecasting and consolidation. The component consolidates and secures planning data on the PerformancePoint server. The planning data is integrated with both BI analytics and scorecards. The interface is very similar to Microsoft Excel, and Excel 2007 is tightly integrated with the product, as are other Microsoft Office 2007 components. The planning tool comes with the Microsoft Business Modeler.
PerformancePoint operations are defined as Web services and provided service APIs enable access from Microsoft and other third-party products. The Microsoft Dynamic ERP application will employ the capabilities of PerformancePoint, for example.
PerformancePoint will enter beta in the Fall of this year and will be released mid-year 2007. The early announcement of this product is apparently because certain features will be visible in the release of the Office 2007 product.
Posted June 6, 2006 3:57 PM
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