Even Smarter Analytics: IBM to Acquire SPM Software from Varicent

On Monday, IBM announced it will acquire Varicent Software Incorporated, adding sales performance management (SPM) capabilities to its already impressive Smarter Analytics offerings.  The move puts IBM in a strong position to compete for new business in the financial, insurance, retail, and telecommunications industries.

Varicent’s software should be particularly attractive to businesses whose revenue is driven by commissioned salespeople.  By automating and analyzing the collection and reporting of sales data across finance, sales, HR, and IT departments, Varicent helps businesses yield more profit from their sales, most notably by aligning compensation and other costs with strategic business goals.

In addition to state-of-the-art SPM software, Varicent also brings a network of more than 180 customers to the table.  Their portfolio includes a significant number of sales organizations within high-growth markets – in other words, the exact customers IBM must target in order to achieve their goal of building a $16 billion analytics empire by 2015.

We continue to be impressed with IBM’s strategy of uniting cutting-edge analytics solutions under the Smarter Analytics banner.  It’s also great to see software geared towards sales executives incorporated into a portfolio that already includes Coremetrics and Unica – both of which are more strongly associated with marketing.  Hopefully, by linking these two related disciplines in a single platform, Smarter Analytics will help reduce some of the tensions that often exist between sales and marketing departments.

The market’s appetite for software that can transform IT insights into profitable outcomes is still growing.  More and more organizations are realizing that analytics can help them use operational and financial data to gain a significant edge over their competitors.  And by folding the most powerful tools available into a single platform, we think IBM is positioning itself for unparalleled success in the ever-expanding analytics market.

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