Open Source BI Evolution in 2009

Dear Readers,

Beeing silent for a while, in this first post of “09” I would like to focus on rapid changes in Open Source BI market : those past months, I have seen every week early Open Source BI customers coming back to commercial solution (usually, early implementation of stone age Open Source  BI solution), along with some Open Source consultant turning back to commercial projects, simply to have stable and reliable long term project. And I don’t see anyone moving on those subjects … just keeping an unbearable silence !

In the same time, because of the financial crisis coming from States, man told us “this is good time for Open Source BI”. Please … open your eyes … no one has no more time to waste with some old fashion platform, even for free.
Everyone is under pressure … customer are looking for mature technologies, and commercial BI companies are making unprecedent discount (an average of 70%, and sometime more !). Open source is not leaving in a bubble, and there is no dream anymore.

Good short-time game for some BI stone age platform is now over …  no open door anymore to sell the company at unreasonnable price … too late, sorry …

What’s next ? We will see 2 or 3 Open Source BI solution survive, and Vanilla will be one of those survivor, simply because the 3 majors companies involved in the Vanilla project are profitable, and our fix cost are supported by projects. This is true : no important marketing investment for Vanilla … no backup from american market analysts ( so what … they just keep silent on vast majority of non-american projects), but important applications already in production, and reliable long-term technology & Concepts (Eclipse/RCP & GWT, BIRT, secure Metadata)

I have no cristal globe,  I just write that situation is moving very quickly, and some editors will have to live with limited resources, reduce cost and learn to be profitable … while customers are upset by marketing annoncement and looking for reliable solution.

Have Fun … year is just starting !
Patrick

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2 Responses

  1. What we’re seeing is more and more customers willing to deploy the community rather than subscription editions of the open source BI platforms. Several years ago, they were terrified of GPL. Not any more, it seems.

    When we engage with such customers, we very carefully review the risks inherent in community edition deployment. Some companies are ok these risks, having worked through the issues with legal. Maybe it’s the economy at play as well.

  2. I agree, Open Source licence type is not an issue, if you have a look at Actuate survey, this is even not a subject listed anymore !

    This raise the question “how to evaluate the value of Open Source company”, especially if some companies (not only in BI area) have raised so much money that the target price is not raisonable.

    Situation is the same in France : customers take the community edition for eveything : database, application server, Vanilla, we just explain to those users that they won’t have access to support, they won’t be involved in roadmap, … but they still have access to our Enterprise Services package.

    Patrick

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