Database market growth driven by business intelligence software

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While the implementation of business intelligence software to meet regulatory requirements is driving growth in the relational database market, analysts are divided as to which vendor is the customer’s favourite.

According to a report by IDC, the number one slot goes to Oracle, which, it said, has a 39.8 per cent share of the space, followed by IBM with 31.3 per cent and Microsoft with 12.1 per cent.

The three giants generate about three quarters of all revenue in this sector, which last year was valued by the market research firm at $13.5 billion, a slight increase on the previous year “as a result of a thaw in the world economy”. By 2008, however, IDC expected the market to have leapt to almost $20 billion.

But Gartner disagreed with this analysis. Its study places IBM as number one as a result of maintaining a 35.7 per cent share of the market, beating Oracle into second position, with a 32.6 per cent slice of the pie. Microsoft, meanwhile, controls 18.7 per cent of the space, it said.

The market researcher also disagreed with its rival on the size of the relational database market, pointing out that new license revenue in the sector was worth $7.1 billion in 2003, a 5.1 per cent increase on the year before.

“Many companies are examining ways to augment and improve reporting and data management capabilities to meet increasing regulatory compliance requirements. The increasing strategic importance of data warehouse and strategic business intelligence initiatives has provided some of the growth in the relational database market” explained Colleen Graham, Gartner’s principal analyst.

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