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BI finds favor in China

Business intelligence adoption is also picking up in India as more businesses recognize its value, a new IDC study shows.
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Written by Vivian Yeo on

China is projected to narrowly overtake Korea to become the second largest Asia-Pacific market for business intelligence (BI) and business process management (BPM) by 2010, according to a new report by research analyst IDC.

In the report, completed in June, IDC projected that the BI and BPM market in China will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 20 percent, nearly tripling to US$107.1 million in 2010, from US$37.6 million this year.

Korea, a relatively mature BI market, is expected to grow at a relatively slower pace, according to IDC. The combined BI and BPM market potential is projected be worth about US$100 million by 2010.

By the end of the decade, China alone will contribute about 17 percent to the Asia-Pacific market, excluding Japan, for BI and BPM. IDC forecasts the Australia and New Zealand markets will remain unchallenged as the largest in the region.

Besides China, IDC expects India to also grow at a CAGR of more than 20 percent. The Asia-Pacific regional market, excluding Japan, will grow at 13.5 percent over the next five years to reach US$630 million in 2010.

Sharon Tan, senior analyst for application tools software at IDC Asia-Pacific, told ZDNet Asia on the sidelines of a business optimization conference Thursday that BI and BPM adoption in China is still at a relatively immature stage. The average Chinese business uses such tools for relatively basic functions.

However, this is expected to change in the near future, Tan noted. "We see [businesses in China] going up the 'food chain', deploying BI and BPM to help grow their enterprises," said Tan.

According to the Malaysia-based analyst, businesses in China may not have collected enough data yet to derive the true value that BI and BPM tools can offer. As the volume of data increases, enterprises will be able to use the data to gain better business insight, she added.

The main adopters of BI and BPM in China have been telcos, said Tan. On the other hand, the take-up of BI and BPM in China's manufacturing sector is "not as large as expected" even though the country has a large manufacturing base, she said. While Tan did not indicate when this sector is expected to significantly adopt BI and BPM, she pointed out that it was "only a matter of time".

Last week, BI vendor Business Objects also singled out China as a key market in Asia. Its CEO John Schwarz is targeting to at least double the 7 percent revenue contribution from the Asia-Pacific region, which it registered during its last fiscal quarter ended Jun. 30, 2006.

MicroStrategy, another BI player, launched on Wednesday its Asia-Pacific headquarters in Singapore, and announced the appointment of a new president to oversee the region. The Singapore facility is expected to offer infrastructure and support to other regional offices in Melbourne, Seoul, Sydney and Tokyo.

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