There has been some talk in AR circles for a few months now about a reorg at Ovum but the firm remained remarquably quiet about it. So in advance of tomorrow’s AR community call, here are some details about what’s going on.
All their analysts were gathered today near Heathrow for the Ovum Industry Summit, a customer event quite similar in form to the old Butler Group Symposia.We had a chance to meet with their CEO, Brett Azuma to get more details of Ovum’s recent change of ownership. At the end of June, it will have moved out of Datamonitor’s Farringdon offices and into Informa’s Mortimer street building. This physical relocation effectively completes the separation from Datamonitor ; Ovum has indeed been trading as an “independent company” for the past few months, though still in the Informa group (the holding company for Ovum, Datamonitor and many other businesses such as the Lloyds List, numerous events and journals).
This newly acquired relative independence means Ovum will have control over its sales force, will be able to design their own methodologies and deliverables, research agendas, etc, all previously common to the whole of Datamonitor.
There always was some unease about this marriage, though both in theory are research firms, Datamonitor has a strong focus on quantitative market research for industries while Ovum was selling its IT advisory services on the back of uncompromising analysis reports. This was epitomised by Datamonitor reports not citing the authors name while Ovum always has been known for its team of opinionated thought leaders.
For Ovum, the benefits translate not only in more flexibility around research agendas, processes and deliverables, but also in the possibility to step into social media and rebuilding an advisory business -this model was not a good fit at Datamonitor.
On the negative side, the divorce effectively means that it’s the end of the “Collaborative Intelligence” whereby Ovum was to leverage Datamonitor’s strenghts in verticals. While on paper it was a seducing idea, execution proved more difficult.
- Now maybe the time for a breakthrough after a few disappointing years when Ovum got bogged down in organisational issues. They have a great opportunity, funding and… no excuses to fail.
- We see a lot of potential for Oum to grow and capture share in EMEA in particular in the IT analysis market, especially at a time when Forrester has its eyes on APAC (see ) and a weak presence there.
- Although it’s not competing strongly in APAC, Gartner’s weaker presence there and the fast growth of the market is also an opportunity for Ovum.
What does this means for AR professionals?
- Ovum is a strong local player, with global aspirations and should be on any AR plans where it has coverage areas (telco, services and software), but do go to the level beyond and keep watching Ovum on the coverage front to make sure they deliver on promises.
- Check your contracts now and evaluate whether you should re-negotiate as access to the Datamonitor research will be cut off (can be an issue for instance in energy, healthcare, etc)
- Check the details and register for the of the AR community call (see this post: Ovum’s got a brand new AR soapbox)
- Past post on the IIAR Blog on Ovum:
- IIAR Cafe with Carter Lusher – 12 May 2011
- Ovum launches its ‘brief a ton’
- Ovum’s got a brand new AR soapbox
- Reminder to Attend Jan 20th IIAR London Forum
- January IIAR London Forum Features Ovum
- Analyst Panel on Cloud Technology at Tomorrow’s IIAR London Forum
- November IIAR London Forum Features Analyst Panel on the “Cloud”
- IIAR Discussion Group – OVUM to Discuss the Black Book of Outsourcing
- The British Are Coming! Datamonitor stalks Gartner analysts
- WORLD EXCLUSIVE: Gideon Gartner on the IIAR Blog!
- An update from Ovum
- Brief summary of the last IIAR Forum presentation by Datamonitor