Factors shaping vendor differentiation in the Business Intelligence software industry

Klaus Solberg Søilen, Anders Hasslinger


This paper is investigating, through a mixed-method research combining interviews and an online survey, how BI vendors differentiate themselves when it comes to application integration, security issues and pricing strategies. The conclusion is that BI vendors differentiated themselves mainly by having individual definitions of what BI is. Buyers are therefore advised to compare vendors through the vendor’s definition of Business Intelligence. Security issues were mainly user centric and pricing strategies implied that vendors approach buyers in a similar way where they offered standardized software bundles that would require some degree of customization in order for the buyer to derive the maximum benefit from the applications. It can be deduced from the obtained results that most competitive BI vendors are acting more homogenous towards buyers when they offer their products and handle customers, compared to niche BI vendors.


Business Intelligence, Software production, Application Integration, Pricing Strategies, Security Issues, Definitions

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