You can run but you can’t hide

May 18, 2010

Social media has changed the whole customer-vendor relationship. If our customers are not happy they have 100’s of ways to tell a lot of people. Vendors can run but they can’t hide.

Howard Dresner gets it. He tapped into the social media world to gather a sampling of over 450 business intelligence users to learn their real-world experiences with their vendors. He gathered their feedback in the new market study by Dresner Advisory Services, The Wisdom of Crowds Business Intelligence Market Study™. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • Pentaho, in the Emerging Vendor category, was ranked against six other vendors and received the top ranking in value for the price paid and quality of consulting services.
  • Pentaho is the clear leader in OSBI ranking above other OSBI vendors in every category.
  • Pentaho received the second highest marks overall among BI vendors.
  • 100 percent of responding customers recommended Pentaho.

Red Hat’s slogan comes to mind in this situation: “Truth Happens.” With the growth of social media you cannot hide if you have bad support or a crappy product – social media puts the power back into the users hands.

You can’t just say you are the best or largest – you have to be it. It is easy to throw around meaningless statistics about having “over 100,000 community members”, when the 100,000 merely visited a website or forge and registered to get community editions or view a forum. What is worse is when over 75% of these “community members” only visited that site one time and never returned. Making these grossly misleading claims is bad for commercial open source in general and horrible for the specific vendors.

Beyond the Wisdom of Crowds report, I wanted to point out a few other independent surveys out there to see the truth.

Open Source Solutions: Managing, Analyzing and Delivering Business Information
BeyeNETWORK Research Report by Mark Madsen

The End of Enterprise Software: Open Source Finds an Opening
By Wayne Eckerson, Director, TDWI Research

If you are interested to know what your peers are saying about Pentaho in The Wisdom of Crowds Business Intelligence Market Study™ the survey is available for download by visiting: http://www.pentaho.com/wisdom_of_crowds/

Richard


What do Tim Tebow and Pentaho have in common?

April 23, 2010

Tim Tebow was selected in First Round of NFL Draft!

Why is this great? And why am I blogging about this?

  1. He is a University of Florida/Gator Graduate – and so am I
  2. He helped us win 2 NCAA National Championships in Football
  3. He won 1 Heisman and was nominated for two more
  4. Biggest reasons why this is great:
    • He was ridiculed by all of the NFL scouts as not being a “NFL product”
    • All of the major NFL “Analyst” predicted he would be picked in the 3rd round
    • All of the major NFL “Analyst” said “he didn’t have it”

It sounds just like what Pentaho went thru in 2007-2009 with analysts, mega-vendor competitors, pundits, etc. – “we wouldn’t be anything” , “we couldn’t stand up to the big guys”, “we wouldn’t be around in a few years”, etc.  Well, what are the analysts’ saying now? – “OSBI is Here to Stay”, “OSBI will Grow by 500% by 2012”, “OSBI is a 80% Better TCO”, “Pentaho Leads The Way in OSBI”, etc. What are the mega-vendors doing now? Giving away free reporting in a desperate attempt to compete with us, providing their sales teams with competitive ppts vs Pentaho, losing in bake-offs against us, upsetting their customer base by rising maintenance prices, buying “Pentaho” Google adwords – oh, how times have changed!

So, just like Tebow did in football, Pentaho continues proving its leadership position in the BI market.

Go Gators,

Richard


Tom Leonard joins Pentaho

April 21, 2010

More good news from today is the announcement that Tom Leonard has joined our team as Executive Vice President of Worldwide Business Development. Tom is responsible for formalizing strategic relationships with target accounts across all of Pentaho’s channels inclusive of Global 1000 customers, OEM/ISV’s, system integrators, and technology alliance partners. With over 25 years of technology sales and executive experience Tom has a lot of insight into the industry. I’ve asked for him to be the first of many guest bloggers on the Business Intelligence from the Swamp blog. My question to Tom is, “What brought you to Pentaho?” Welcome Tom!

Guest blogger: Tom Leonard

So I wanted to take the opportunity to share my thoughts concerning why I joined the Pentaho team. During my career, I have been fortunate to be part of two venture backed company successes – Bluestone Software and JBoss. For both, I was an early member of the team and witnessed the remarkable journey of each company scale from a small bookings / revenue position to recognition as high-growth, technology / market-share leaders.

Through these experiences (and via some not so successful ventures), I have learned that the key ingredients of a successful early stage company mostly comprises of the following:

  • The technology
  • The people (that shapes the chemistry / culture of the company)
  • The market opportunity

At Pentaho, all of these ingredients are in place (with room to grow and improve of course):

The Technology

Over the years, Richard, James (Dixon) and team have invested mightily in building out a complete BI Suite that is on par with the mega and pure play business intelligence vendors. Pentaho employs the key developers, it owns the product development and roadmap that is supported by a large, vibrant, engaged open source community, and offers the market a fully integrated / interoperable business intelligence suite of products that are enterprise ready, deployed on an industry standard Java-based platform (either on-premise or via a Cloud / SaaS-enabled model), and is widely deployed in production by thousands of companies.

The proof is in the numbers:

  • Thousands of organizations rely on Pentaho open source BI every day
  • Over 5M downloads of Pentaho products since the inception of the company,
  • #1 in open source data integration / ETL according to the BeyeNETWORK research  report
  • Hundreds of customers that have an active Enterprise Edition subscription with Pentaho.

The People

In my humble opinion, this is the intangible that makes companies great. Often – you do not know until you arrive at the company and see the good and the not so good. At Pentaho and under Richard’s leadership – there is an amazing team that are all in-synch to drive the company to its fullest potential, opportunity and success. There is a tremendous level of passion and energy across the company that is fueling our significant growth with end customers and partners worldwide. Further proof that Pentaho is hitting its stride as a company; candidates’ industry-wide want to work at Pentaho as evident by the “many” that have joined the team over the past quarter.

The Market Opportunity

The open source business intelligence space is growing at a phenomenal rate – so says Gartner (“Open-Source Business Intelligence Tools Production Deployments Will Grow Five-Fold through 2012”)

Not much more that I can add here……

In summary, the company greatly understands the business that we are in, the opportunity before us and we possess the know-how to monetize and scale our business model. We have a proven team that has consistently demonstrated success, both on the BI and open source fronts. Pentaho has great investors, world class Board of Directors (Rob Bearden – JBoss and SpringSource and Zack Urlocker – MySQL), and an executive team that is directing the company to new levels of success each month (Lars Nordwall heading up worldwide sales, building a great team and executing flawlessly, Joe McGonnell working his magic on the marketing front, and Richard, James and team delivering great products).

This is the perfect time to be at Pentaho – if you have not noticed, I am very glad to be a member of the team.

Tom Leonard
Executive Vice President, Worldwide Business Development
Pentaho Corporation


Q1 2010 full speed ahead

April 21, 2010

As Capt Morgan used to say “Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead”. Pentaho is going full speed as evidenced by the press release we issued this morning giving the community  insight into the past quarter and the great momentum happening at Pentaho. Here are just a few highlights from the release:

  • Compared to Q1 2009, Pentaho had a 177 percent increase in new Enterprise Edition customers* including:
      – Auto-Wares
      - Ericsson
      - Experian
      - NTT
      - Postbank P.O.S.Transact GmbH
      - Toyota Kreditbank GmbH
  • 229 percent growth in total bookings from Q1 2009 to Q1 2010.
  • Finished Q1 2010 with the most successful quarter in company history for the second quarter in a row.
  • Record number of new OEM partners including MICROS Systems, Inc.
  • Best launch in company history introduction of the revolutionary Pentaho Data Integration 4.0.

I encourage you to read the full press release here, ‘Pentaho Soars with Second Straight Record Quarter

Get seated, strap yourself in, and enjoy the ride.

Richard

*This figure represents customers that have purchased an annual subscription to Pentaho Enterprise Edition products, not simply product downloads or the purchase of documentation, training or per-incident support.


You are not alone

March 31, 2010

I’m a happy guy today. Not only was I able to make it onto the lake this morning for some early morning water skiing, I also just reviewed the results and feedback from Pentaho’s PDI 4.0 launch yesterday. This release was a record setter for us on a number of fronts. Here are a few highlights:

  • Over 2,600  PDI 4.0 EE downloads in one day
  • We had 1,850* people registered for the live WebEx today, ‘Pentaho Defines a Better Way to Build BI Solutions’ – the most people we’ve ever had!
  • Pentaho.com reached an all time high for unique visitors.
  • Forum activity is up 251% over normal days
  • Demo.pentaho.com is up 192%
  • Great coverage and positive response from industry press and the community on Twitter.

To me this proves that the market is hungry for a new approach to an old idea. If you are one of the people looking for a BI solution that is quicker to build, easier to adapt and faster time to value, you can see that you are not alone.

*If you were not one of the 1,850 that attended the live webinar, ‘Pentaho Defines a Better Way to Build BI Solutions,’ you can watch the replay here and access additional resources and recordings.

If you were one of the 1,850 that attended the webinar– what did you think? What were some of your key takeaways?


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