In a survey of telecoms companies by Yankee Group, it would appear than master data management has made it to the second highest investment prioity amongst the wireless, wireline cable, and satellite companies. This is interesting since it appears to confirm the generally very bullish predictions for MDM as a market, which I wondered whether may be affected by the general economic climate. After all, MDM is not a trivial matter on an enterprise scale, so it could be tempting to defer an MDM project and put it into into the “too difficult” pile for a year or two to see how the economy recovered.
Later in the year the Information Difference will conduct some research amongst MDM vendors to see how the predictions from analyst firms such as Forrester and Yankee are stacking up to the reality of a tricky economy.
Microsoft generally likes to acquire software companies when they are quite small, with a dozen or two employees. In this way they can assimilate the development staff into Redmond and into the Microsoft way of doing things. An example of this was last week, when they decided to acquire a data quality technology. There are literally dozens of data quality vendors out there, most fairly small, and so there was plenty of choice. They opted for Zoomix, a small Israeli company which I first encountered in 2006, though they were founded in 1999. Zoomix had some quite clever marketing, claiming “self learning” technology as a way of making data profiling in particular more productive. In this way it could be compared to Exeros, although the technology underpinnings are quite different.
In this case the R&D team will move into the Microsoft technology centre already in Israel. This is a logical move by Microsoft, who acquired Stratature in order to give them an MDM capability. This product is currently being retooled under the code-name Bulldog, and a data quality offering to complement this is a natural fit. The timing around Bulldog’s release are unclear at this point, as it is folded into the SQL Server release timeframe.
At the Information Difference we continue to add new research on the MDM vendors. One of the things that is useful to know about vendors when drawing up a shortlist is which platforms the various vendors support e.g. which database, which web server, and perhaps more minor but useful technical information about whether they have double byte character support, do they have 7 x 24 helpline support etc.
There doesn’t seem to be a place where this kind of information is gathered together but there is now.
This also has information on the level of SOA support (if any), which non-English languages are supported in the user interface etc.