Brio Backs IBM

Staking its claim on the success of IBM in the enterprise server market, business intelligence software developer Brio Technology (Palo Alto, Calif.) has introduced Brio Enterprise for DB2, a new line of products made specifically for IBM network administrators.

Brio also announced completion of a worldwide reseller agreement with IBM for the new products. As part of the agreement, Brio created a specific IBM "private label" version of Brio Enterprise 6.0, while giving IBM the right to sell its private label version of Brio Enterprise on all IBM platforms and languages worldwide. While the two companies have an existing reseller agreement, this new deal provides a more flexible framework for delivering complete business intelligence solutions on a global basis.

"IBM has taken the leadership role in business intelligence and data management products," says Nick Halsey, Brio's VP of business development and channel sales.

Brio began engineering its products for IBM in 1994, when Brio Query for AS/400 was introduced. A few years later, Brio began working with IBM on bundling some of its products on DB2, OLAP and Visual Warehouse. In August of 1998, IBM bundled Brio with Visual Warehouse. Although customers were happy with the bundling solutions, Halsey says, "they wanted configurations that met their needs better."

After some negotiations, Brio reached a deal to develop Brio Enterprise for DB2. This suite of products will feature native support for DB2 Universal Database, DB2 Universal Database for AS/400 and DB2 OLAP Server, a "snap-in" meta data connection for Visual Warehouse Connection. It will be available in Web and Microsoft Windows client implementations for both AIX and Windows NT server environments.

"This worldwide agreement with Brio technology allows us to deliver complete, customized business intelligence solutions that are configured to meet customer needs--regardless of platform or number of end users," says Jim Kelley, VP of data management marketing for IBM's Software Solutions Division. "Making Brio Enterprise: IBM Edition available to IBM customers worldwide will help us deliver on our commitment to truly meet the needs of global enterprises."

DB2 Universal Database for AS/400 will give AS/400 users state-of-the-art business intelligence solutions, according to Halsey. With this new product, AS/400 users can ask questions without having to go through the IT department. Instead of waiting days and weeks at a time to have these questions answered, Halsey says it will be only minutes before the questions are answered, drastically cutting the response time. "The AS/400 market will benefit because this kind of decision support capabilities hasn't been available in midrange market," he says. "We're bringing technology from larger enterprises into the mainstream."

In addition to bringing IBM a suite of products that will answer customer demands, Halsey says the agreement is also very valuable to Brio. "This agreement is a great opportunity for us, particularly in the international market," he says. "This will give us an extension of our channels and give us a better reach in the marketplace."