Anti-Climax? Siebel and Teradata Expand Technology Partnership

In the wake of Oracle’s stunning Siebel gambit, is there a future for a Teradata-friendly Siebel Analytics suite? Teradata officials say so.

In a move that might strike some as anti-climactic, Siebel Systems Inc. and the Teradata division of NCR Corp. last week announced that Siebel’s Business Analytics application suite has been optimized for Teradata Warehouse.

But in the wake of Oracle Corp.’s stunning Siebel gambit, is there a future for a Teradata-friendly Siebel Analytics suite? Teradata officials seem to think so.

For starters, they argue, last week’s announcement doesn’t merely presage a new relationship between the two companies. It is, rather, the culmination of a partnership and technology initiative that kicked off in April of 2004. So by this time last year, says Rick Volz, Siebel global alliance manager for Teradata, Siebel had already shipped the first pieces of its Teradata-optimized Analytics suite.

“By [September of] last year, we had generally announced that [Siebel’s] customer analytic applications were ported and optimized for Teradata; that we had done some work to map the physical database of Siebel Analytics to Teradata’s industry data models; that we had developed some methodology or best practices around how to integrate the Siebel Analytic application with an enterprise data warehouse; and that we had optimized the [Siebel] BI platform for Teradata, so that platform was driving functionality into the database,” he says.

As a result, Volz says, a number of joint Teradata-Siebel customers have already deployed the optimized Siebel Analytics suite—while others, attracted by its value proposition, have since been brought into the fold, too. “DirecTV was a new customer, they were one of the customers driving us together to work on things. They really liked the TD database and warehouse, and they liked the Siebel analytic applications, and they said ‘Hey, make these things work together,’” he comments. “We also have another company in France that recently made the decision greatly in part by TD’s supporting the Siebel Analytic applications to invest in Teradata as a new data warehouse capability and technology. And what we’ve seen is that several of our customers have upgraded their data warehouses [to Teradata] as a result of their [use of the Siebel] applications.”

So what does last week’s announcement bring to the table? Simply the Siebel Analytics suite entire, Volz says. “Now the entire Siebel Analytics product set is generally released and available to be implemented on Teradata,” he indicates. “Now the Enterprise Sales, Enterprise Services—known as Enterprise Contact Center—the Financial Management, the Workforce Management, the Supply Chain Management, all of those analytical applications are available on the Teradata Warehouse, and that’s what we announced last week.”

But what does Oracle’s stewardship of Siebel mean for Teradata? The two vendors are, after all, nominal competitors in the high-end data warehousing space. Volz says there’s room for “coopetition,” for one thing, and suggests that Teradata and Siebel have already seeded the market with customers that will require ongoing support and maintenance.

“From our perspective, what we’ve been hearing from Oracle leads us to take this partnership and basically go full speed ahead with our sales marketing services, and engineering initiatives,” he concludes. “We’re hopeful that we do end up with some opportunity of coopetition out of this, so we’re hoping that it turns into plenty more opportunity to work somewhat more strategically with Oracle, kind of like we do with SAP to some degree.”

About the Author

Stephen Swoyer is a Nashville, TN-based freelance journalist who writes about technology.