By Jim Ericson
Oracle has announced general availability of its new 7.9.6 business intelligence application release with new applications for project analytics and loyalty analytics. As a component of Oracle’s Fusion middleware, the entire BI application suite now operates across core Oracle platforms including Oracle E-Business, Siebel, PeopleSoft and JD Edwards.
The new apps join existing Oracle BI applications spanning CRM, ERP and industry-specific processes with added dashboard views and more pre-configuration. 
“It gives customers a starting point to customize from,” according to John O’Rourke, VP of product marketing for EPM products at Oracle. “We’d like to think we’ve already done 80 percent of the hard work down at the data warehouse and ETL level,” and that customers can quickly address the remainder of their needs through customization.    The updated suite is an extension of Oracle (formerly Siebel) analytics built out on a broader set of application modules in a data model that can link KPIs, metrics and perform cross-functional analysis. The new project analytics application was described in part as a means of complying with performance management requirements of The American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, which has been embraced (LINK: by other vendors.
The greater immediate impact of the BI release, which came in the shadow of Oracle’s 12.1 E-Business announcement, is a lower layer of integration to core Oracle platforms and those of others. Oracle has offered analytic solutions for each of its product lines in the past but not a means of relating data across them. 
“Whether you’re running PeopleSoft and Siebel or Siebel and Oracle eBusiness suite and JD Edwards, they now can have a single warehouse and BI repository that conforms dimensions and pulls data from all systems,” says Paco Aubrejuan, general manager for PeopleSoft enterprise products at Oracle. “In our installed base, many customers have multiple product lines and now one reporting solution can address all of them and correlate business metrics.”
AMR Research analyst John Hagerty says an agnostic analytic approach to platforms is something the market has been waiting for. “Although it’s not every BI app for every underlying Oracle asset, the core products are there now. I would say the key thing is that these analytic applications are very much what people are interested in right now as they try to get to value faster by having predefined analytics done for them that they can also modify.”

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