Oracle Courts Business Intelligence Community

Michael Singer

Updated · Jan 29, 2004

Oracle is telling a story of disparate systems and
misplaced information this week at its software conference.

The Redwood Shores, Calif.-based software Wednesday released its Oracle
Customer Data Hub and other software this week as a way to entice companies
to buy their business intelligence offerings and differentiate themselves
from rivals like SAP and Siebel Systems.

“We think it is the easiest and cheapest way to get all of your customer
information in one database,” company CEO Larry Ellison said during his

The idea behind the new software is to consolidate customer data into a
central repository, clean it up into XML forms, refer to it based on e-mail
addresses and let companies export it to where they need it.

The Hub is
different from a data warehouse, say Oracle execs, in that it allows for
real-time access to customer data without the need to move data between the
transaction system and a data warehouse.

“We're recognizing that there are a number of ways to integrate our
solutions to outside partners,” Robb Eklund, vice president of Marketing
Oracle CRM, told

But because the Hub is written using Web services
languages like XML and Java, Eklund said it will work with Oracle,
non-Oracle and even third-party data integration vendors.

The platform is comprised of three different systems: the Oracle Data
Model, which underlies the Oracle E-Business Suite; Oracle Customers Online;
and Oracle Data Librarian. The Hub uses the customer definition portion
tools to do loading, mapping and data cleansing. Customers can
view data online with options on top, including pre-built analytics for
customer analysis.

The software is available now and is expected to be part of the next
release of its business applications platform, the Oracle E- Business Suite
11i.10. Oracle has already signed up the likes of Network Appliance, Dell and restuarant chain IHOP.

Eklund said Dell, for example, has a customer service
project not yet into production that needs to manage more than 200 million
customer records using different backend software systems. The company Hub
also taps into Oracle's Application Server 10g grid software.

Oracle salespeople are expected to market the software to the company's core customers including construction and engineering, consumer-packaged goods, government, financial services, healthcare, high-tech manufacturing, professional services and telecommunications. Pricing for the Hub was not disclosed.

During a financial analysts briefing, company president Chuck Phillips
said Oracle will even do the integration for a customer if they don't
already have TIBCO or something else in place.

“We can't force you to use our integration stack,” Phillips said.

Oracle is taking the wide-scale approach to the problem but has to fend
off established vendors in the field like SAP AG and Siebel
Systems .

One avenue, Oracle said, is its next generation E-Business Suite. The
company said version 11i.10, which is due out in mid-2004, supports
open-standard interfaces established by the Open Applications Group (OAG)
and now natively support more than 150 standards-based OAG business objects,
such as how to define a purchase order.

Oracle said it is also expanding its
support for support industry-specific integration protocols, such as
RosettaNet for high-tech manufacturing and HL7 for healthcare.

One area Oracle said it is addressing with the new E-Business Suite is
new capabilities for radio frequency identification (RFID). Oracle is one of
several companies looking to help suppliers of Wal-Mart and the Department
of Defense comply with the mandate to incorporate RFID tags in pallet

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    Michael Singer

    Michael Singer is a career coach, podcast host, and author to help you step into a career you're excited about. Currently, He is a coach and trainer helping entrepreneurs and executives achieve business and leadership success. He is also an award-winning business journalist focused on the intersection of technology, Big Data, Cloud, SaaS, SAP, and other trending technology.

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