IBM and the Democratization of Analytics

The latest of ’s annual & Analyst Summits held recently in New York City came at an interesting time for the company, the community and the larger IT industry. and “big data” technologies have become central to many vendors’ go-to-market strategies. At the same time, public and private sector organizations are adopting related solutions in hopes of capturing more insight and value from their continually growing information assets.

For IBM, it’s been just over a decade since the company began expanding its core holdings to incorporate analytics assets and capabilities. That effort cost well over $15B in external acquisitions and internal organic development resulting in key breakthroughs, including the “” platform that thoroughly drubbed the all too human Jeopardy! champions in 2011.

The commercial results also appear to have been well worth the cost of those investments. In New York, IBM executives noted that the company is on course to achieve the goal it set for itself in 2010—to build analytics and big data solutions and services into a $20B annual business by 2015. But at the same time, we noticed a subtle shift in IBM’s strategic messaging around analytics and big data.

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NOTE: This column was originally published in the .

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