Over the last decade, Temtec has built a small but solid business selling analytics client software that interfaces with Hyperion Essbase OLAP (online analytical processing) servers.
Its Executive Viewer product is used by non-technical users to create reports based on complex data matrices stored in these servers. For example, managers at regional LearnDirect
training centres – run by the UK government-backed University for Industry – use Executive Viewer to create and view reports that can compare factors such as the number of people who have signed up for courses, the hours they spend on each course, and the costs of resources used.
This sort of functionality is typical of all OLAP software products. But Temtec has differentiated itself from the rest of the market by optimising its web-based software for use with Essbase servers, and making the tools very intuitive to use.
According to Nigel Pendse, the influential author of The OLAP Report, Executive Viewer is “the fastest web OLAP client we have ever seen”. It also manages to remain intuitive while providing a good depth of analytical functionality – something that most OLAP companies do not achieve, says Pendse.
Certainly, Executive Viewer has won Temtec some prominent customers, mainly across Western Europe, such as Citibank in banking, Hewlett-Packard in technology, Argos in retail, and Johnson Matthey in manufacturing.
The market for Essbase front ends is not growing however. And to develop its business, Temtec has had to expand into the bigger, and less mature, market for software based on Microsoft’s Analysis Services OLAP servers.
Temtec launched its Microsoft-compatible Executive Viewer Business Edition product in mid-2002, targeting mid-market Microsoft users. It costs £10,000 for the initial 15 seats and £4,000 for every additional 15 seats – expensive, considering that Microsoft’s Excel spreadsheet software, dominant at this end of the market, costs half of much.
Further growth relies on Temtec successfully completing the optimisation of its Microsoft version to the standard of its Essbase product, as well as building strong OEM and reseller relationships.