On April 25, Infor announced its acquisition of Birst - a vendor of business analytics and intelligence (BI) software. With Birst, Infor acquires a cloud-based analytics platform geared to big data. The acquisition complements Infor’s broad portfolio of enterprise applications designed to support end-to-end business operation.
Existing, new, and prospective Infor customers might be left wondering how the new offering impacts Infor BI – its white-labeled Cognos analytics platform. Infor has spent years developing a tight integration between Infor BI and various other Infor enterprise applications through ION as part of its Infor Xi platform. Infor’s also developed a stable of channel partners that specialize in implementing BI.
For existing and prospective Infor BI customers, it’ll be interesting to see if Infor pushes them onto Birst via a convergence campaign like the one it's currently running across its legacy ERP customer base. If so, customers might be able to expect a break on subscription (or license) fees, but expect to pay for services. In the shortrun, those who recently acquired Infor BI might be upset because they thought they had acquired a long-term viable solution.
However, such are the risks when acquiring a packaged solution that includes a white-labeled application owned by a third-party. Initially, filling-in an incomplete solution with a white-labeled product can be a good way to offer customers a full package. Over time, however, you should expect the solution vendor to look for an option that doesn't require it to share revenues with a third-party.
All Infor BI customers and prospects should seek answers to the following questions:
- What are Infor’s integration plans for Birst?
- What is Infor’s development commitment to Infor BI?
- What are the roadmaps for each?
Contact us today (phone: (647)499-8161) to discuss the implications for your business.