Business intelligence has enjoyed a boom despite the less-than-healthy state of the global economy.
According to analyst house Gartner, worldwide revenue for technology related to business intelligence, analytics applications and performance management grew by 22 percent in 2008.
The increase took overall spending to more than $8.8bn (£5.4bn) compared to around $7.2bn in 2007.
Senior research analyst at Gartner, Dan Sommer, said this growth is partly down to consolidation in the industry as big vendors have focused on promoting the BI technology they have acquired to their existing customers.
SAP came out as the top BI company in terms of revenue during 2008. According to Gartner, the company took more than $2bn and a 24 percent market share, following its acquisition of Business Objects last year.
SAP was followed by SAS, Oracle, IBM, Microsoft and MicroStrategy respectively.
According to some analysts, business intelligence could come into its own during the recession as the technology can help inform critical business decisions.
However, despite possible downturn-related enthusiasm for BI, Sommer added that the same level of high revenue growth seen last year is not expected to continue in 2009.