February 17, 2010 – Building on a 10 year partnership, Accenture and SAS are joining forces to jointly develop, implement and manage next-generation predictive analytics applications.

The new Accenture SAS Analytics Group will fuse Accenture’s industry knowledge with SAS’s analytics capabilities, Henry Morris, senior vice president for IDC’s Worldwide Software and Services was quoted to say. The alliance is expected to bridge an industry-expertise gap by establishing more industry-specific applications.

“What is in very short supply are experts who are familiar with analytic techniques and know how to apply them to industry-specific decisions. The Accenture SAS Analytics Group would bring together the market leader in advanced analytics software with the industry and applied analytics expertise of a global services firm,” Morris said.

The companies plan to address the contemporary needs of the market, investing in industry-specific applications that target the financial services, health care and public service sectors, according to the release. Later, they plan to establish additional cross-industry applications for the customer and enterprise management arenas as well.

The grand promise of predictive analytics – still largely unrealized in most companies – is that it will become ubiquitous, guiding all decisions, transactions and applications, James Kobielus, senior analyst for market research firm Forrester Research wrote in a November blog. “For the technology to rise to that challenge, organizations must move toward a comprehensive advanced analytics strategy that integrates data mining, content analytics and in-database analytics.”

Whether or not the Accenture SAS Analytics Group will assist in addressing that challenge remains to be seen, but Morris believes that the pairing is slated to meet the pressing knowledge needs of the marketplace.

Listen to last week’s episode of DM Radio to hear James Kobielus of Forrester Research, Tony Rathburn of The Modeling Agency, Joydeep Das of Sybase and Erick Brethenoux of SPSS, an IBM Company discuss use cases for predictive analytics.

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