What does this mean for the average Fortune 1000 company buying MDM technology? Not as much as you might think.
On the mega-vendor side, they’ve still got Oracle, IBM and SAP to choose from. IBM, obviously, now has three MDM platforms to offer (InfoSphere MDM Server, InfoSphere MDM Server for PIM, and Initiate Systems) where they used to have two. But Oracle has three as well, and will soon have four: Customer Data Hub and Universal Customer Master for customer MDM, PIM Data Hub for product MDM, and Fusion MDM Hub, Release 1 of which is supposed to ship later in 2010. And SAP continues to forge ahead with improved versions of their NetWeaver MDM product. So the recent consolidation doesn’t seem to have affected the mega-vendors that much – “the big get bigger”, you might say.
Outside of the “Big Three”, I continue to think Siperian being acquired by Informatica is a good thing, for Siperian’s customers, for the product roadmap, and for the market as a whole. Informatica brings a lot of expertise in integration and data quality to the table, and its Identity Systems matching engine and Address Doctor data cleansing tools are very good at what they do. It will be interesting to see how Informatica integrates Siperian as a company and as a product into itself, but I have a lot of confidence that they’ll do it well.
All this does pose an interesting issue for Oracle, however. Oracle made a big commitment to Informatica in its Fusion MDM Hub by including Informatica components for matching and cleansing on an OEM basis. But by buying Siperian, Informatica has declared itself a direct competitor in the MDM market. So there’s a lot of speculation as to what Oracle will do about this. In the short term, it may be too late to pull the Informatica components out of Fusion MDM Release 1.0, but longer term, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Informatica components either replaced or deemphasized, perhaps with an open architecture approach allowing other third party identity resolution / matching and address cleansing products to be plugged in, in place of Informatica’s. Although there’s also been a lot of speculation about Oracle buying Informatica.
D&B/Purisma remains an interesting player. Disclosure: prior to starting Hub Designs, I worked for D&B. I saw D&B’s launch of a hosted version of Purisma last fall and was impressed by it. For a lot of situations, Purisma’s product can be a good solution. So even though I wouldn’t call Purisma a full-fledged master data management solution, it’s worth keeping an eye on because it does a great job of integrating internal customer data with D&B’s external reference data. And having it available on a hosted basis can be very helpful.
So the bottom line is, where there used to be six players, now there are five. Of course, the MDM market being as hot as it is, everyone and their brother claims to be an MDM solution, but these are the five products that I pay the most attention to, and that we see the most in the marketplace. What do you think? Please let us know by commenting here.