predictive analytics, big data, sap
SAP has just announced that it will expand its analytics portfolio with the acquisition of San Francisco-based KXEN, which provides easy-to-use predictive analytics tools for business users. 

 If the acquisition seems a bit strange given the fact that SAP has a comprehensive analytics portfolio already, a quick look at KXEN’s principal product explains all.

KXEN’ Predictive Analytics

KXEN's InfiniteInsight software and its Cloud Prediction service platform gives enterprise users accessible analytics, which in turn offer insights that target customers and ensures customer acquisition and retention.

It also offers automated data prep, modelling and deployment tasks, and is able to provide data models in minutes, or hours if the data is particularly dense or complex. It also scales for terabytes and petabytes of data and enables users pull meaning from 1,000's, or even 10,000's, of variables with no IT intervention..

And it is this that SAP is buying; predictive analytics that can work with large information sets and which are accessible to business users. KXEN, SAP says, makes the use of predictive analytics applications a lot easier than it is with current products from the likes of SAS or SPSS, which was bought by IBM in 2009.

SAP and KXEN

Not that SAP does not have predictive analytics already. However, the SAP Predictive Analysis software that comes with BusinessObjects offers the classic analytics and modelling that has been carried out for years, and which is not very accessible to non-technical users.

The idea, according to SAP, is to combine KXEN with the SAP HANA platform, which already offers advanced analytics, agile visualization and enterprise business intelligence capabilities.

In this respect, SAP is already talking about incorporating it into the SAP Fraud Management analytic application, SAP Smart Meter Analytics software, and the SAP 360 Customer solution.

The result will be a portfolio of solutions for more than 25 data-driven industries like telecommunications, retail, consumer products and financial products.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed and it is expected to close in the last quarter of this year. Neither company has said whether KXEN will operate as a standalone, or whether it will be integrated directly into SAP. Neither did they say whether staff would be retained or not.

image courtesy of Syda Productions Shutterstock