Oracle is debuting a business intelligence module — for SAP users. Oracle Financial Analytics for SAP — a part of Oracle’s BI applications product family, release 7.9.7 — is designed to help SAP users wring more value out of their financial systems. While they are at it, Oracle no doubt hopes, these users may opt to migrate more of their operations to the Oracle platform.
Oracle PR contact Eloy Ontiveros was unable to secure an interview for CRM Buyer for this article. Neither was Joan Levy of Blanc & Otus.
“It is not surprising that Oracle would develop a component for SAP,” Nucleus Research Vice President Rebecca Wettemann told CRM Buyer. “Few companies are going to abandon the millions of dollars they have invested in an ERP system like SAP — but they will experiment with component applications.”
These companies might also be lured by Oracle’s approach to business analytics, she added. “Oracle, in general, is moving ERP away from traditional financial transactions and onto a path where meaningful data is pushed into the hands of end-users to allow them to make more timely and productive decisions.”
This will hardly be the last attempt by Oracle to target SAP’s user base, Wettemann added.
The two companies have a longstanding rivalry, worsened by the recent court ruling that SAP must pay Oracle US$1.3 billion for copyright infringement in a case stemming from SAP’s TomorrowNow division that is now defunct.
“We will continue to see Oracle go after SAP’s customer base aggressively,” Wettemann said. “Furthermore, as customers reach maturity with their existing ERP applications, particularly when upgrades may be risky and expensive, all bets will be off. Oracle wants to be in every one of those considerations.”
At the same time, though, SAP is stepping up its own analytics outreach, continued Wettemann. “The Business Objects side of SAP’s business line is something it is pushing aggressively as well. And don’t forget about IBM and what it is doing with Cognos.”
In general, expect to see stepped-up competition and continued targeting of vendors’ respective customer bases. The winning feature over the next product evolution will be usability.
“Making these apps role-based intuitive, enabling users who are not data analysts or statisticians to be able to grasp meaning out of the data without having to call IT — that is what is going to close deals,” Wettemann concluded.
What It Offers
Oracle Financial Analytics for SAP includes a prepackaged ABAP (Advanced Business Application Programming) code-compliant adapter. It is also certified with Oracle Data Integrator Enterprise Edition to integrate SAP’s accounting data directly with the analytics application.
It features hundreds of key performance indicators, role-based dashboards, and more than 200 reports. Other elements include prebuilt integration and metadata mapping.