IBM Finalizes NISC, Initiate Acquisitions, Boosts Business Analytics Capabilities
IBM (news, site) has just announced the close of two acquisition deals made in January and February with National Interest Security Company (NISC) and Initiate respectively that will expand its business analytics abilities in the public sector arena and healthcare.

NISC (news, site) which is based in Virgina, specializes in providing information management and analytics to the public sector, particularly the defense, security and energy sectors, and will be integrated into IBM’s Global Business Services.

Initiate specializes in data integrity and master data management technologies particularly in healthcare and government and enables users to share information across multiple systems to improve the services they provide to patients, citizens and customers.

NISC And Business Analytics

By buying NISC, IBM strengthens its presence in the public sector and getting a wider market for their Business Analytics and Optimization (BAO) products which provide predictive intelligence by analyzing structured and unstructured data.

With this acquisition, IBM will expand its capabilities with federal, state and local government entities, particularly in the areas of defence, healthcare, energy, logistics and security.

Business Analytics and Optimization is the recently developed strategy from IBM of applying advanced analytics to helping  organizations predict the likely impact of actions so as to improve decision-making.

According to IBM, typically companies manage their unstructured data separately from their structured data -- the kind that resides in applications and databases. The solution proposed by IBM is to look at those two types of data in a unified way and analyze them both in order to change the way companies do business.

Initiate And Business Analytics

Initiate provides systems for sharing information across multiple systems, particularly in the area of healthcare. By buying this company, IBM adds more business analytics abilities to its bow by enhancing its ability to deliver reliable data taken from many different systems and providing analytics for this sector.

In healthcare, because there are so many agencies involved, information is fragmented across operating environments and often represented inconsistently. Initiate's software pulls this data together no matter where it resides to establish a single, multi-purpose view of critical business information.

The result is a system enables users draw on data from hospitals, doctors' offices and payers to create a single, trusted shareable view of millions individual patient records.

IBM And Business Analytics

IBM has invested US$ 10 billion in 14 strategic acquisitions to build its business analytics portfolio since 2005. These acquisitions delivered strong results in 2009, generating 9 percent revenue growth.

The development of their analytics capabilities has been ongoing for some time and includes the acquisition of Cognos two years ago and SPSS last year.

At the time of the SPSS deal market research company IDC suggested that Big Blue held a 0.5% share of the US$ 1.5 billion worldwide advanced analytics market in 2008. Combined with SPSS, IBM now holds 14.5% share of the market, trailing only SAS Institute Inc.'s 33% share.

One of the reasons given as to why it would go down this route -- apart from countering the Oracle (news, site) and Sun deal  -- was to improve market placement by putting itself in a better position than any other vendor to deliver integrated smart solutions in the future, from physical world awareness to decision support tools.

Financial details of neither the NISC nor the Initiate deal were publicized.