IBM Acquires Netezza as Big Data Market Continues to Consolidate Around Appliances, Middle Market

Updated: September 21, 2010

Netezza fits in with IBM's maturing business analytics strategy. Big Blue has long put an emphasis on data analysis and business intelligence (BI) as key drivers of IT infrastructure needs. The company has demonstrated a clear understanding that data analysis and BI can also be easily applied to business issues.

IBM's relationship database, DB2, also fits into the big picture. Over the years, IBM has built a strong family of database-driven products around DB2. Essentially, IBM has successfully worked to tie the data equation together with the needs of enterprises and the strength of their IT departments.

We continue to evolve our capabilities for systems integration, bringing together optimized hardware and software, in response to increasing demand for technology that delivers true business value.

While DB2 reaches into the past and supports the data needs of legacy and distributed systems and applications, new architectures around in-memory and optimized platforms for persistence-driven tasks are in vogue. While Neteeza's strengths are in analytics, this architecture has other uses, ones we'll be seeing more of.

Fast-forward to the Netezza acquisition. The $1.7 billion grab shows that IBM is well aware that big data sets don't lend themselves to traditional architecture for crunching data. IBM, along with its competitors, have been developing or acquiring new architectures that focus more on in-memory solutions.

Rather than moving the entire database or large caches around on disk or tape, then, new architectures have emerged where the data and logic reside closer together -- and the data is accessed from high-performing persistence.

For example, with Netezza appliances, NYSE Euronext has slashed the time it takes to load and extract massive amounts of historical data so it can run analytic queries more securely and efficiently, while reducing run times from hours to seconds. Virgin Media, a UK provider of TV, broadband, phone and mobile services with millions of subscribers, uses Netezza across its product marketing, revenue assurance and credit services departments to proactively plan, forecast, and respond to the effect of pricing and tariff changes enabling them to quickly respond with competitive offerings.

Business analytics consolidation

With the Netezza acquisition, the business analytics market is seeing consolidation as major players begin preparing to tap into a growing big data opportunity. Much the same as the BI market saw consolidation a few years ago -- IBM acquired Cognos, Oracle bought Hyperion, and SAP snapped up Business Objects -- vendors are now seeing big data analytics as an area that should be embedded into the total infrastructure of solutions. That requires a different architecture.

The competition is heating up. EMC purchased Greenplum, an enabler of big data clouds and self-service analytics, in July. Both companies are planning to sell the hardware and software together in appliances. The vendors tune and optimize the hardware and software to offer the benefits of big data crunching, taking advantage of in memory architecture and high performance hardware.

Featured Research
  • The Contact Center Conquers the Cloud

    Contact Centers have come a long way over the past few decades. Learn how this important asset has evolved into the cutting-edge offerings of today. more

  • The New SMB Phone Systems Comparison Guide

    Does your small or medium-size business need a new phone system? Then you're in luck! Our new, updated comparison guide helps you cut through superfluous information and narrow down your list of solution providers. Get the latest data on phone system features, pricing, and performance metrics in an easy-to-use format. more

  • Contact Center Software on a Budget

    Although contact center software is necessary for a modern contact center, it can be outrageously expensive. Many companies find that their budget bloats during the implementation process. more

  • How UC Can Help Your Business Survive the Holidays

    The holiday season is filled with frenzy and excitement for businesses and consumers alike. Consumers prepare gift lists, compare brands and prices, and begin shopping with a vigor that is not present most other times of the year. For many businesses, the holiday season accounts for a large profit bump at the end of each year, and companies strive to exceed their goals and keep customers happy during this rush late in the year. more

  • [Infographic] Switching Phone Systems

    There are a lot of possible reasons you might want to switch to a new phone system. The old one might cost too much or be too troublesome to operate and maintain. It might not be flexible enough. It might not be reliable enough. Or it just might not have the kinds of features and capabilities that you need in today’s competitive business climate. more