Analysts Find Sagent Ahead of Vast Majority of Competitors

Susan Andre 2004

A report published by U.K. based software analysts, Bloor Research, has found that the Sagent Data Flow software for Business Intelligence purposes is, in their view, “…ahead of the vast majority of its competitors.” As long standing distributors of the technology, Alicornio Africa (formerly Sagent Southern Africa) is pleased with the results from this internationally recognised analytical enterprise for reasons that stretch beyond their bottom line.

While the Sagent Solution has certainly been the topic of many a litigious discussion, Susan Andre, Managing Direct Alicornio Africa says,”The results will put to rest the debate and finally confirm Sagent’s rightly deserved place in the South African market, on top with other leaders.” Amongst other things, top of the list was that the Sagent Solution is sure to fulfill the fast growing demand for a single, integrated solution for data movement and analytical requirements. For the past six years, Alicornio Africa has stood strong in their belief that the Sagent Solution is at least five years in advance of most, if not all, other information integration technologies available, and yet the effort and energy this dynamic, pioneering team have put into educating the market to the case, has in many instances been ignored and minimised .

Key findings by Bloor Research on the Sagent Data Flow highlight that:

  • The technology is more extensive than “…almost every other data integration product in the market … “as it provides both EII (Enterprise Information Integration) and ETL (Extract, Transform, and Load) capabilities off a singular platform.
  • Is significantly different to other information integration solutions as “…it was originally designed not just as a workbench to visualise transformation processes but to visualise the data itself.” According to Bloor, this finding has two major consequences these being, “ In conjunction with the product’s process-driven approach, the development of data movement workflow is very much simpler. In particular, it makes the development process much more easily understandable by end users and it automates much of the attribute level mapping that is required by more conventional tools. “

Bloor goes on to find that Sagent can be utilised as an independent business intelligence tool, since is has the capacity to operate successfully in conjunction with other BI platforms. According to manufacturers of the Sagent Data Flow, Group 1, amongst at least half of their customer base, the product is deployed in conjunction with other technologies.

Additional features of note, as identified by Bloor include:

  • That a business intelligence front-end is provided in addition to the Data Flow functions that have been specifically designed to support more complex analytic applications, which incorporate built-in statistical functions for analytics and data mining, amongst other functions.

According to Bloor, who have re-iterated just what Andre herself has been trying to emphasise, the product has, “…three unique propositions: first, it is much easier for the end users to understand than other products in the market place; second, it offers both ETL and EII capabilities in a single package; and third, it offers direct business intelligence capabilities either via its own or third party front-ends.”

On addressing market suitability and key performance indicators, Bloor again emphasises what Alicornio have found challenging to get through to the skeptical South African market place; that the product is perfectly suited for both medium and large businesses and, in the words of Bloor, “…it is the broader applicability of Sagent Data Flow that should make it most appealing to customers wanting to cut their costs by standardising on a single platform.”

Commenting on the road forward and the opportunities presented with the positivism reflected in the Bloor report, Andre says, “South African organisations of all sizes will take note and be open to this innovative product; a product that is widely distributed and utilised around the globe. Success companies like Credit Guarantee, Sanlam Capital Markets, Department of Water Affairs and Forestry, Capespan, MasterCard International Inc., JP Morgan, Dunn and Bradstreet and others are using Sagent for a reason. South African business can take the example set by international market leaders, and stretch the boundaries of their information integration.” For further information, contact Louise Hunt on (011) 442 2498 or visit www.alicornio.co.za .

About Alicornio Africa:

For the past six years, Alicornio Africa has serviced an impressive array of blue chip and other companies. In addition, they have continuously added to the knowledge pool of their industry by hosting leading international experts in the field in training and discussion forums. They have established themselves as leaders in the education of the expert and layman alike in the intricacies of the highly complex arena of business intelligence, information integration management, data warehousing, architecture, design and implementation. Alicornio Africa’s consulting services are both product and non-product specific. The company distributes and implements DOC1 for Customer Communication Management, and they are the distributors and implementation specialists of the Sagent Solution for Information Integration and Istante Software for RTE.

About Group 1:

Group 1 Software (Nasdaq: GSOF ) is a leading provider of solutions that help over 3,000 organisations worldwide maximise the value of their customer and other data. Group 1 provides industry-leading technologies that allow businesses to cleanse and enrich their corporate data, generate personalised customer communications and integrate and deliver data across the enterprise. These technologies are essential components of enterprise applications including customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP) and business intelligence systems. Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Lanham, Maryland, Group 1 offers solutions utilized by leaders in the financial services, banking, GIS/mapping, retail, telecommunications, utilities, insurance and other industries. The company's customer base includes such recognised names as Entergy, GEICO, L.L. Bean, MapQuest, QVC, Siemens, Wal-Mart and Wells Fargo.

About Bloor Research:

Bloor Research was founded in 1989 and guides organisations on the effective development and utilisation of information technology, through independent, expert research, analysis and tailor-made advice. The independence and integrity of its research has made it one of the most influential and respected analyst organisations, with offices in the UK, Switzerland, the Netherlands and in the USA. It is also the publisher of the successful community-based web magazines IT-Director.com whose membership represents a combined annual IT spend of approximately £30bn.

All references can be found in the Bloor Research 2004 document. For a full version of the document, please email platinumprose@wol.co.za