Informatica to join Amazon EC2 cloud service

Data integration software to be available via hosted platform

Informatica, one of the last of the standalone data integration software vendors, is bringing its on-premise enterprise software to Amazon.com's hosted service EC2. PowerCenter Cloud Edition will have all of the features of version 8.6 of its standard flagship PowerCenter suite, says Girish Pancha, Informatica's executive vice president and general manager of data integration. Users will be able to buy the service, now in beta and due for release in September, via a standard licence or hourly. The service is aimed at data integration developers who are increasingly hosting data on Amazon.com's S3 data storage service, Pancha says. It may also help Informatica, which tends to sell to enterprises with large data integration needs, win smaller customers. "We are not worried about cannibalisation," he says. Informatica fills a hole in the enterprise software lineup available on EC2, which is loaded with databases and data processing apps such as Oracle, MySQL, Microsoft's SQL Server, and Hadoop, and application servers like IBM WebSphere, JBoss, and Oracle's WebLogic, but lacks any data integration or ETL (extract, transfer and load) tools. "We believe that we are the first to offer data integration in the cloud," Pancha says. "This is green field for us. Over time, others will follow us. Ultimately, it will be our traditional competitors." Informatica already had a SaaS offering called Informatica-on-Demand. This is aimed at business users rather than developers, he says, and was mostly used to integrate cloud-based data back into an on-premises data repository. Informatica announced the cloud service late last month. Informatica, which has been the subject of Oracle takeover rumours, relies heavily on customers using both its apps and Oracle's, acknowledged Informatica CEO Sohaib Abbasi during a recent conference call with Wall Street analysts. Abbasi said Oracle's full-fledged entry into the data integration market via its acquisition of GoldenGate won't hurt Informatica's business, and that the two companies will continue to "partner very strongly". He said: "In the past five years, we have not competed against GoldenGate. And the reason for it is that we provide distinctly different technologies. The best way to characterise GoldenGate technology would be for data movement applications and that's why they are used primarily for high availability," Abbasi said. "The competitive landscape has not changed much over the years ... I expect that we will continue to enjoy as strong a partnership with Oracle as we do with HP and SAP and Microsoft." Abbasi also said that the upcoming version 9 of PowerCenter will offer more features to attract business users, rather than IT users like data integration developers.

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