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February 26, 2012 / berniespang

Better results, lower cost for a broad set of new IBM clients and partners

A number of stories I heard in the last couple of weeks made me appreciate the broad range of new IBM clients and partners we have seen recently.  I think the diversity supports the points I have been making about a new era of data management where IT professionals are demanding the best solution to address each requirement.

Better performance, reliability, and hands free administration

I had the good fortune of attending the Informix India User Group meeting last week in Mumbai.   One of the stand out stories was from event sponsor Avanti Software Solutions, who shared why they recently moved their application portfolio, including Retail and eGovernment solutions, to IBM Informix software.   Previously they had used Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle Database.   The net:   better performance, reliability and hands free administration makes their solution better and saves their clients time and money.   As a result, we are welcoming new IBM Informix clients across India from small 300 transactions a day retailers, to government agencies serving millions of citizens.  (if you missed it, I outlined other Informix client stories in my last post.)

More companies need the best – to be the best

Then this week I learned that IBM added 76 System z (“mainframe”) clients in the last 5 quarters – more than in the previous 5 years.  And we are expecting an even bigger number this year.   Why?  Aspiring global leaders in emerging markets that need to compete at a higher level than ever before; the new zEnterprise 114, that starts at $75,000–the lowest entry price ever for an IBM mainframe; and companies who need to cut costs by consolidating their inefficient Linux server sprawl.   The net here: lower operating costs along with advantages in security and reliability – these systems pretty much run with zero downtime.

Roughly half of these additional System z clients are returns by companies that had previously stopped using System z.   I think that is a very exciting stat.  Both new and renewed appreciation for the unique advantages of System z may be why more that 1000 schools are teaching classes and labs with IBM System z in countries such as China and India, as well as the US.

Rapid deployment analytics for competitive advantage

Those 2 stories reminded me that in the most recent IBM earnings report, CFO Mark Loughridge noted: “strong performances from our Netezza offerings, which were up nearly 70 percent. This appliance complements and extends our business analytics portfolio with a rapidly deployed, low-cost-of-ownership solution for high performance queries and analytics. For the quarter, almost a third of the transactions were with new Netezza clients. Since acquiring Netezza, IBM has expanded its customer base by over 40 percent. And when we go head-to-head against competition in Proof of Concepts we had a win rate of over 80 percent this quarter.”

I love the MediaMath story as an example of why Netezza systems are winning IBM new clients.  Early in the start-up’s life, MediaMath used and outgrew MySQL. They tried Oracle Standard Edition with about five terabytes of data and found it wanting. According to Chief Technology Officer Roland Cozzolino, it was difficult to ingest and store data from 50 million daily transactions, let alone handle their growth to 350 million transactions per day. It took “tons of partitions to summarize and break data into vertical buckets by advertiser for analysis,” said Cozzolino, and the Oracle platform limited any critical ad hoc analysis capabilities that were required to understand data value and to “gain a horizontal view of the business.”   Cozzolino reported, “We selected Netezza because it offered the best ROI, the fastest time to market of any solution, ease of use and a low total cost of ownership.”

Lower cost, higher performance SAP landscape

Yesterday I read a post by Conor O’Mahony with video from the IOD conference where Coca-cola Bottling shared its experience moving from Oracle Databse to DB2 ….  the net:  $100,000 potential savings  outweighed zero existing DB2 skills in the decision to move its SAP landscape from Oracle Database to DB2.  And now a skeptical 12 year Oracle DBA veteran “would not go back.”   Additional benefits noted: a  supply chain manager noticed the improved performance, and they double the numbers of records over 3 years without having to add storage – thanks to ongoing advances in DB2 deep compression.

Cutting database costs in half

And finally, watching that video reminded me of another compelling story I heard directly from a new client at the IOD conference.  Reliance Life Insurance Company, one of India’s leading insurers, cut database total cost of ownership in half by switching from Oracle Database on Sun servers to IBM DB2 on Power Systems.     In a  2011 case study, Reliance notes that in addition to cost savings, application availability has also increased significantly. “When we were on Oracle Database, downtime of our applications was quite high,” says Ms. Daga. “After we moved to DB2, we were actually able to report 95 percent uptime of all applications as compared to only 80 percent with Oracle Database.”  Most notable is that these improvements have come as the number of concurrent users IT supports has grown fourfold. “When we had Oracle Database, we only scaled to 3,000 concurrent users for our portal,” adds Ms. Daga. “Since we moved to DB2, our capacity has increased to 12,000 concurrent users.”

One size DOES NOT BEST FIT all

In today’s information intensive world, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all data management solution – if “fit” means optimal preformance and cost efficiency.  A growing number of organizations are realizing better results and lower costs by switching to data management software and systems that best fits each of their needs.


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