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Microsoft ramps presence in BI

Software giant Microsoft is stepping up its efforts in the business intelligence (BI) space, revealing new products, strategic partnerships and an acquisition.

Software giant Microsoft is stepping up its efforts in the business intelligence (BI) space, revealing new products, strategic partnerships and an acquisition.

Claiming the firm was delivering a "new day" for the BI sector, Jeff Raikes, president of the Microsoft Business Division, addressed over 2,400 delegates at the firm's first BI conference, held in Seattle, US, last week.

"Microsoft is charting a course to transform the BI marketplace as we know it," Raikes said. "By fundamentally changing the economic model for BI and delivering unprecedented ease of use, we are enabling the broadest deployment of BI possible so employees can better contribute to a company's overall business performance."

Raikes gave details of the next version SQL Server, code-named ‘Katmai', which will be available next year. Katmai will include key capabilities for large-scale data warehousing and richer information delivery through Microsoft Office. Raikes said this would make it easier to share BI capabilities across an organisation's information workers.

On the partnership side, Microsoft has strengthened its ties with services firms Accenture, Cap Gemini and TCS; all announced global initiatives to provide support for Microsoft BI products.

Microsoft also used the conference to announce that it has acquired SoftArtisans, a developer of Microsoft Office format software.

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