SOURCE: Information Builders

August 13, 2007 09:01 ET

Information Builders Enhances Operational Business Intelligence Solutions for SAP

Powerful Combination of Business Intelligence and Integration Technologies Make WebFOCUS the Best Choice for Global Organizations Using SAP

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - August 13, 2007) - Information Builders, the leader in production business intelligence (BI) systems, today announced new upgrades to WebFOCUS, enhancing the product's ability to integrate with SAP on all levels. Numerous customers, in all industries, including: Valero Energy, JoAnn Stores, Airbus France, Hillerich & Bradsby (makers of the Louisville Slugger), and Manitoba Hydro have implemented WebFOCUS in conjunction with SAP to deliver high-quality, actionable business information to users throughout the enterprise.

WebFOCUS for SAP significantly reduces the risk, cost, and time associated with moving or transforming data and applications into the SAP Business Warehouse (BW). WebFOCUS can scale to handle increasing numbers of concurrent users, without compromising application performance. SAP has recognized the benefits of WebFOCUS and certified it to be Powered by SAP NetWeaver™, and because WebFOCUS is tightly integrated with SAP, security investments in SAP are protected, ensuring the safety and integrity of an organization's information systems. WebFOCUS continues to deliver new features and functionality to make it the most integrated and complementary BI solution for SAP in the marketplace. Some of the SAP specific features delivered with the new release of WebFOCUS include:

--  Optimized intelligent adapters to improve performance, such as
    dynamically generating efficient ABAP or MDX requests to the SAP
    application server; WebFOCUS can pass filtering down to the SAP NetWeaver
    BI (BW) application server whenever a BW variable is used in the report
--  Improved metadata management enables users to drill down to specific
    object types within SAP as they are represented in SAP; WebFOCUS metadata
    for SAP also supports multiple languages as well as Unicode configurations,
    allowing users to see reports in their native language
--  Intelligent GUI development tool, which recognizes and displays SAP
    NetWeaver BI (BW) metadata and enforces the associated SAP OLAP reporting
    rules; as a result, developers and power users have an intuitive tool that
    minimizes errors during report development and reduces application
    development time and cost, allowing IT to quickly deliver more information
    to more users across the enterprise
--  Hierachy reporting -- WebFOCUS delivers significant features to make
    reporting against SAP hierarchies easier to filter, display, and navigate;
    the ability for WebFOCUS to report simultaneously off of two root nodes is
    also a new feature in 7.6.2
--  Security administration, which give IT organizations looking to
    simplify security administration by implementing a single sign-on (SSO)
    methodology the ability to count on WebFOCUS to fully support SSO via SAP
    Logon Tickets, the preferred method for implementing SSO from the NetWeaver
    Portal; unlike other solutions, WebFOCUS passes the SAP logon ticket all
    the way down to its Reporting Server and authorization to SAP R/3, ECC, and
    NetWeaver BI (BW) data will be based upon the credentials associated with
    the SAP Logon ticket -- a true end to end SSO solution for SAP
    

Valero Refines Its Process With WebFOCUS

San Antonio-based Valero Energy has approximately 22,000 employees and 2005 annual revenues of $82 billion. The company owns and operates 18 refineries throughout the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean with a combined throughput capacity of approximately 3.3 million barrels per day. Executives at Valero use WebFOCUS to pore over daily, weekly and monthly reports from its SAP ERP system. The reports help them optimize profitability across the hundreds of crude oil, liquid propane and gasoline products it sells in several thousand locations.

WebFOCUS met six important technology requirements for Valero thereby avoiding any substantial customizations: Excel Integration, Ad Hoc Support, Multi-source, OLAP, Web enabled, and integration with SAP portal -- all of which provided Valero executives with greater functionality than they had before. Managers can now drill down on line-item budget information to analyze, for example, whether a promotional campaign for retail merchandise at service stations helped lift sales. They can also confidently scroll through daily financial reports instead of having to wait for dated monthly information.

Airbus Takes Flight With WebFOCUS

A long-time Information Builders customer, Airbus France adopted WebFOCUS for its procurement processes. More than 160 employees using the reporting solution to manage orders, tenders, and contracts. As part of an overall company-wide approach to control IT costs, Airbus has implemented a new project, moving much of its mainframe content to the WebFOCUS environment.

Because of WebFOCUS' ability to integrate with disparate systems like SAP R/3 and BW, Airbus is able to open up its information system to new users. Airbus is currently finalizing an application that enhances their reporting capabilities on SAP BW objects such as InfoCubes, ODS, and Master data by coupling that data with non-SAP external data such as DB2 tables or flat files. The objective of the integration is the ability to handle decision-support reporting requests from users in a relatively complex IT architecture environment.

"As the business intelligence market continues to consolidate, organizations are going to look even harder for ways to capitalize on existing investments," said Gerald Cohen, CEO of Information Builders. "More than 30,000 SAP users require the ability to access and integrate data for reporting purposes and with WebFOCUS for SAP, users can feel confident that they are delivering and receiving consistent, real-time information for decision-making."

About Information Builders

Information Builders' award-winning combination of business intelligence and enterprise integration software has been providing innovative solutions to more than 12,000 customers for the past 30 years. WebFOCUS is the world's most widely utilized business intelligence platform. It provides the security, scalability, and flexibility needed at every level of global extended enterprises. Its simplicity helps create executive, analytical, and operational applications that reach dozens to millions of users. Information Builders subsidiary iWay Software provides state-of-the-art, multi-purpose integration engines that address all SOA, application, data, and information management requirements. Its integration adapters have been adopted by the leading software platform providers. Together, these products give Information Builders' customers the ability to live up to the company motto: "Your Business, No Barriers."

Information Builders' customers include most of the Fortune 100 and U.S. federal government agencies. Headquartered in New York City with 90 offices worldwide, the company employs 1,600 people and has more than 350 business partners.

Contact Information